Immortal Technique spoke to Hard Knock TV’s Nick Huff Barili recently about a wide array of topics. He addressed the status of his still-in-the-works fourth LP, The Middle Passage, which he calls a “conceptual album” that deals with aggression and violence and how those two things are sometimes necessary to elicit change. The Harlem emcee said he’s finished seven tracks so far and that the album will boast an impressive list of producers but that none could be named at this time because the “contracts aren’t signed.”

Tech also speaks on his recent appointment as CEO of Viper Records. He sees his duty as an independent record executive to treat artists fairly. “When you’re signed to a huge record label…essentially, you are getting a loan with terrible interest rates and you don’t get to keep the property ’cause the masters aren’t yours. I don’t take my friends’ masters. I license [the records] and give them back to [the artists].”

Tech also takes time to offer his impression of Hip Hop across the globe, which he says is superior in some ways to the homegrown variety. “It’s real ill. You’ll almost find like a more pure culture [in other countries.] [In America] it’s a little Hollywood, glamorized. People are sycophants, they don’t care about the artists.”