fat joe

Despite meager sales of Jealous Ones Still Envy 2, Fat Joe said critics’ talk of his career demise is preposterous. Still, Joe feels fueled by the doubt. He has a new LP coming in a few months called The Darkside: Volume 1.

“The people gotta understand: I don’t give a f— right now,” Joe said. “It’s nothing to be political, nothing to be friends about. My n—as that’s with me is the loyal n—as. Bandwagon n—as don’t rock with me. Right now, I tried to give y’all the nice guy. I tried to go, ‘Hello, Aloha’ — they don’t want Fat Joe to do that. I’mma have to do something that I’m an expert at; it’s called ‘kill people.’ That’s why it’s The Darkside: Volume 1. Once you get this one, you ain’t gonna never want Fat Joe to do anything else. Just know that this new album right here is about to be the skeleton. We about to change how every n—a do their album now. N—as is gonna have to come hard.”

Joe’s last LP had club records such as “Celebration” and songs for the ladies like “Put You in the Game” and the aforementioned “Aloha.” This time around, all the material is going to be much harsher, even the songs for the clubs.

“I always give quality work,” he promised. “I always make hot records for people — that ain’t the point. The point is that I need to go back home. I need to go back to doing Don Cartagena, Jealous One’s Envy. I need to go back to that blackout zone, that dark side. All this sugarcoated music, they need somebody to just take them in that right direction. Like Khaled said: ‘The streets is fed up.’

“How I figure it, you make all that pretty music, and you ain’t selling no records anyway,” he continued. “You might as well do what your strength is. I come from Diggin’ in the Crates, Big L, Big Pun. I come from this hard sh–. I’m not playing with n—as. The mask is off, the gloves is off. We darkin’ out, we don’t care. We leaving fingerprints at the police scene so they can find it on purpose.”

Joe is working with Young Jeezy, Busta Rhymes, DJ Khaled, Cool & Dre, Alchemist, Street Runner and more on the LP. Scott Storch is also set to dish out beats.

“Some people wish, they wish it was over,” he laughed. “I got some things that’s gonna light up the airwaves. My first single I’m gonna put out, me and Young Jeezy, when Funk Flex hears this, he’s gonna play it from 7 at night, till 11 at night. No other songs played on the station, no interruption. The worst thing you can do to Fat Joe is back him in the corner or back him down till he’s got no breathing room. He’s a warrior. He’s a conquistador. He’s coming out fighting and swinging harder than ever. … Fat Joe’s walked through fire and the coldest of winters.”

Before the interview, Joe was working on following up a freestyle he dropped a couple of weeks ago over Snoop Dogg’s “I Wanna Rock” beat. This time, he’s taking over the Timbaland track to “Say Something.”

“It ain’t over till Bobby Brown is sober and I got more M’s than Oprah,” he raps.