Montréal rapper Sammy Skills talks MonsturSqwad, the local scene & more
When I was on tour with The Beatnuts last winter, I met a couple of artists at the Montréal show. The first was a grizzly looking fellow with a long beard named Sammy Skills and his partner went by the name Gerila Gee. We got to chatting in the green room at Le Belmont and discussed everything hip-hop and the scene in MTL.
After returning home from the tour, I was able to delve a little deeper into what they represented as artists. Turns out they were a group named MonsturSqwad, some truly grimey heads that are unapologetically underground through and through. Recently they caught my attention with a new video entitled “Serial Killaz (Call Me Charlie Manson)” with Crazy Ace.
I sat down with Sammy Skills to get a better idea of what makes the Sqwad tick. You can check out the Q&A and video for “Serial Killaz” below.
Q&A: Sammy Skills of MonsturSqwad
HipHopCanada: So how did y’all meet Crazy Ace?
Sammy Skills: We met Ace through CY South West and King Mizery at various shows. When I came back on the MTL rap scene I didn’t release any music for the first year. I was doing shows to build up the scene and the spirit again it wasn’t what it is now. It’s flourished, and a lot of unseen talent are getting recognized like Crazy Ace.
HipHopCanada: What was the inspiration for the video?
SS: We wanted to do a Dexter type Tarantino bloody murder scene. The Manson reference in the hook catapulted us in that direction. Gerila created the plastic room scenery. We’re pretty hands on when it comes to our videos.
HipHopCanada: How long have you known Gerila Gee?
SS: Gerila Gee is my real life brother and we always roll together. He helps raise my daughters.
HipHopCanada: Has Gerila always been your producer?
SS: We do a lot of in house production. I went to school for engineering and he picked it up soaked it all in and started banging out beats. Even when we did the Madchild songs we kept it in house.
HipHopCanada: What made you guys come up with the name MonsturSqwad?
SS: Gerila Gee came up with the brand when I did the “Ceasar” video. The first talking ape crossed with a dark twist, more like Gerila Monsters.
HipHopCanada: What do you think makes the hip-hop scene in Montréal unique?
SS: It’s very diverse and I’m not even talking about the French rap movement which right there in itself is crazy. There’s so many styles out here too from trap to boom bap and everything in between…. gotta lot of crew’s too. Like Crazy ace rolls with #OTRWorld, a collective of rappers put together by King Mizery who is another MTL rapper. Blockmode, that’s another crew of rappers headed by Widget and King Jungle… lotta styles out here.
HipHopCanada: Do you have any upcoming releases planned?
SS: Yes, we are doing Crazy Ace’s next EP. We have another video we are working on for Gerila Gee’s first EP, and I’m re-releasing a video called “War Report” featuring Goon from Ottawa.
HipHopCanada: Finally, is there anyone you want to shout out?
SS: Yeah, I wanna shout out the team. Gerila Gee, Crazy Ace, Mike Drones, King Mizery, OTR, CY, Hellbound Bishop, Sky Productions, Merkermusic, Tek Luciano, King Jungle, Young Jungle, Stakdoe, Widget… everyone around the world who supports. RIP Mom and Pops and everyone who left too early.
Written by Fortunato for HipHopCanada
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