KXNG Crooked Has Left Slaughterhouse. Here’s Why (Video)

For the last decade, Slaughterhouse helped set a trend of MCs raising their profiles through forming a super-group. The cross-country collective of Royce 5’9, Joe Budden, Joell Ortiz, and KXNG Crooked (fka Crooked I) released two albums, an EP, and two mixtapes between 2009 and 2014.

Slaughterhouse’s future appears to be questionable, especially as KXNG Crooked announced his departure from the group this evening. “I’m no longer a part of Slaughterhouse,” the Long Beach, California MC declares in an Instagram video. “I’m no longer a part of that collective. It ain’t no beef. It’s all love. I wish them dudes nothing but success. I mean that. Ain’t no problems with Shady [Records]. I love Shady … What they do for me and what they continue to do for me, I’m very appreciative.”

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He continued, “I’ve been sober for two years. Let me tell you a secret: sober Crook likes to rap. [Slaughterhouse] ain’t rapping [together] no more and that’s fine. It was fun while it lasted.” He also spoke on a rumored third album, and second with Eminem’s Shady Records. “Glass House, I have no clue. All I can tell you [is] it exists. If it comes out, I’ll retweet it. Other than that, it’s all love. Everybody who supported me in Slaughterhouse, thank you.”

Joell Ortiz responded online, supporting Crook’s decision and vowing to maintain their relationship, even beyond the group:

The group’s status has been in question for fans. Last June, the MC quartet appeared on Royce’s Bar Exam 4 mixtape, courtesy of “Chopping Block.” It had been two years since their previous song. Royce spoke out against Joe Budden’s criticism of Shady Records’ founder Eminem’s Revival album. “I thought if anybody [Joe Budden] would understand how important it is to walk eggshells around each other’s art—it’s just how we do,” Nickel told the Rap Radar Podcast last month. “The thing that he said that I really didn’t like was something along the lines about them using the plight of Black people to sell a record. That was a little crazy to me ’cause he knows Marshall personally. He’s been in the studio with him.” Meanwhile, Budden has stated that he is currently retired from rapping and working on his podcast and videos.

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Unlike his now-former band-mates, Crooked I had not released a solo album before Slaughterhouse’s formation. For much of the late 1990s and early 2000s, the onetime 19th Street member was a solo artist on Suge Knight’s Death Row Records. He has since released several projects, including collaborations with Statik Selektah and C.O.B. He last released Good vs. Evil II: The Red Empire in December of last year.