July 19, 2024
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Zug Izland’s ‘Cracked Tiles’ Celebrates 20 Years of Detroit Rock ‘n’ Roll Greatness!

The label that runs beneath the streets was mad proud to release their first entirely rock album! Your homies at Faygoluvers.net are speaking of the Psychopathic Records’ hard rock classic LP ‘Cracked Tiles’ from Detroit rockers Zug Izland! Starting out as the brainchild from the Duke of the Wicked, Violent J, ‘Cracked Tiles’ was released twenty years ago today! More Specifically on Tuesday, January 28, 2003!  Majority of Juggalos instantaneously became hooked on ‘Cracked Tiles’ due to its unique blend of hard-hitting rock and roll and experimental grunge rap sounds. This combination of musical styles still makes for an engaging listening experience that’s bound to still have first time listeners hooked for life, as soon as they hit play!  With its Alice in Chains influenced guitar riffs, groovy drums, and soothing vocals, ‘Cracked Tiles’ has become an unforgettable album that any rock fan will immediately adore. Violent J’s lyrics addressed universal themes such as alienation, loss, guilt and regret through metaphors and vivid imagery which add even more depth to the emotional resonance of Zug Izland’s flavorful Michigan rock originality.

Furthermore, Violent J’s song writing embedded within ‘Cracked Tiles’ is an astonishing exploration of the human psyche with an urban decayed survivor mindset, touching on topics that many of us would rather not discuss. Majority of the LP’s imagery became inspired by the real Zug Island, an industrialized unnatural toxic island near Southwest Detroit. It’s a daring narrative that speaks to our very imperfect sense of morality and the often-tangled emotions associated with it. Upon listening to the heartfelt tunes of ‘Cracked Tiles’, the misfits of modern society are reminded of the complexity, confusion and sometimes despair that comes along with creating our own moral compass within the wastelands of today. Yet, people also feel empowered by Violent J’s ability to acknowledge these difficult feelings so honestly. Violent J and Zug Izland united together brought forth a unique soundtrack to the conversation around morality and its sometimes-difficult implications. Above all. With memorable lyrics, driving riffs and haunting melodies, Zug Izland are able to express in song something many are afraid or unable to admit even when surrounded by friends: we all struggle with understanding what is right in sometimes highly questionable situations. Zug Izland’s frontman Syn presented a spine-tingling vocal range across ‘Cracked Tiles’ that could very well rival the likes of Bush’s Gavin Rossdale or even Mud Honey frontman Mark Arm. With fresh cuts such as “Sunny Day”, “Fly Away”, “Always”, “SLAM!”, “Fire” and “Hiroshima”, ‘Cracked Tiles’ will forever stand the test of time amongst the Juggalo culture and beyond!

Some of the members of Zug Izland popped up on socials to commemorate this momentous anniversary!  Check what both Syn and Mike P had to say regarding Cracked Tiles:

Scottie D’s ‘Cracked Tiles’ Memories:

Zug Izland’s Cracked Tiles definitely holds a special place in my life.  If memory serves me right, Violent J put up a poll on InsaneClownPosse.com asking Juggalos if they were interested in hearing a rock project from him.  Now I don’t know the exact results of the poll, but what we ultimately got was a brand-new band signed to Psychopathic Records called Zug Izland!  Every track was written by Joe Bruce.

Once the album dropped, Psychopathic pushed it heavier than most other projects up to that point.  There were marketing tactics to get the “Cry Little Sister” single onto mainstream rock/alternative radio stations which worked in certain markets (including Dallas, TX!).  Zug also toured their asses off for the next few years, hitting most markets 3-4 times a year!  Their street team was always busy posting flyers and getting the word out about the Zug Thugs!

I’ll never forget walking through a Best Buy one day and being caught off guard by what I heard.  It was pretty common for them to play music on the overhead speakers of whatever was current at the time.  I recognized a familiar rock riff which turned out to be “Fire” from Cracked Tiles!  They played the song in its entirety (including Violent J’s rapid-fire verse)!  I’d have to assume that Psychopathic paid for the song to be in rotation there, but it was still dope to hear!

Zug always rocked the fuck out of live shows whether playing at a small club in front of 25 people, or at the Gathering in front of thousands!  Syn, Mike P, Lil Pig, and the rest of the crew never disappoint!

Want a refresher course on this album?  Listen to it below via Spotify:

Zug Izland Cracked Tiles Album Credits:

  • Syn — lead vocals
  • Mike Puwal — guitar
  • Little Pig — drums
  • Dan Miller — keyboards
  • Guido Milligan – bass
  • Anybody Killa — rap
  • Blaze Ya Dead Homie — rap
  • Violent J —  lyrics, arranger, background vocals, vocal harmony
  • Insane Clown Posse — rap
  • Jamie Madrox — rap
  • Shaggy 2 Dope — scratching, cut, background vocals
  • Joy Sparks — vocals

Additional personnel

  • Tom Baker — mastering
  • Joseph Bruce — producer, editing, design, concept
  • Mike Puwal — programming

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    Faygoluvers Comments

  1. Art_of_Mishap

    Art_of_Mishap

    Comment posted on Sunday, January 29th, 2023 08:47 pm GMT -5 at 8:47 pm

    Wasnt a fan when it first dropped. Never really got into the band but cracked tiles did have some good songs. I’ll check it out again.

  2. Mr. Fucker

    Comment posted on Monday, January 30th, 2023 02:49 am GMT -5 at 2:49 am

    I could be wrong, but I think Chad is the only 1 celebrating this album as “20 years of Detroit Rock ‘N’ Roll greatness”.

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