Adrian Younge imagined more than just an album. So when the producer-composer-musician conceived what would become Twelve Reasons To Die, his acclaimed collaborative album with Ghostface Killah, he wanted to create a remarkable world with multiple components. “I wanted the world to be so interesting and tasty that people just wanted to become part of the world,” Adrian Younge says in an interview with BlackMaskDigital.
Thus, Younge was happy when RZA, the album’s executive producer, approached him with an out-of-the-box idea. “RZA said, ‘Let’s do a comic book,'” Younge says. “I was like, ‘That would be pretty dope.'”
Twelve Reasons To Die is now available in various configurations, including a standard CD, a deluxe double CD with instrumentals and a mini comic book, plus a digital deluxe version with instrumentals and digital comic book, multiple vinyl formats and a cassette.
The comic book, in particular, was particularly interesting to Ghostface, whose Ironman alias comes from the comic book character of the same name. “When I was younger, I was into a lot of comic books,” Ghostface says, citing the DC and Marvel brands in particular. “But I always liked Ironman and, you know what I mean, Tony Starks. What makes this one more special is that this comic book is tied into the album. It’s crazy. It’s beautiful.”
RZA helped pick the writing team for the comic, Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon. The writers had the idea of bringing on a rotating team of artists to the project. They envisioned collaborations between great artists, much like the members of the Wu-Tang Clan appear on songs together. “I really love the idea of just how Wu-Tang builds these epics using all of them together to make this masterpiece,” Rosenberg says. “I wanted to do something that mirrors that in the book where you listen and you love Method Man and you want to hear that Method Man verse on the song and you go through the whole song. You get excited as it’s coming.”
Ghostface shares Rosenberg’s sentiment about their comic book. “That is something that I always wanted to do,” Ghost says. “But I just didn’t know who to go with to help me do it.”