After leaving Columbia Records this past summer, Russ has delivered his first comeback EP, 'CHOMP,' via his independent label Russ My Way.
Though the 28-year-old doesn't need any co-signs to certify his stardom, the 5-song pack includes appearances from Busta Rhymes, Benny The Butcher, Black Thought, Ab-Soul and KXNG Crooked, as well as beats made by himself, DJ Premier, The Alchemist and 9th Wonder.
With this lineup of hip-hop legends, it's tough for anyone to question Russ's position in the music industry.
As you can probably tell by now, Russ is thriving as an indie artist. Just the other week, he shared a pair of weekly payouts from digital music distributor Tunecore for $89,704.79 and $107,396.80 each for "inspo purposes only."
He added, "artists : own your music and stop letting these labels take 15% distribution fees for pressing an upload button." (Russ signed with Columbia in 2016 and released three albums through the label.)
It's a familiar take from the New Jersey native. He made headlines when he gave his 3.4 million Instagram followers an inside look at how owning your masters can benefit your bank, with royalties peaking at $282,218.49 – and that's back in Oct. 2017.
"For inspirational purposes. My come up. OWNERSHIP," he wrote. "Ups and downs is all part of the journey. STICK WITH IT. The big dip in fall of 2016 is when I partnered and moved my main earners over to Columbia cuz I wanted them on my debut album. I stopped it at 2017 cuz I don’t need y’all fully in my pockets like that."
For the fierce cover art of 'CHOMP,' Russ tapped Brooklyn designer, frequent collaborator and his former roommate KidSuper, who also created the cover for Russ's previous album, 'SHAKE THE SNOW GLOBE.'
He drew the original illustration on an iPad before giving it "a little bit of movement" in Photoshop. There's merch coming soon, too, which reminds KidSuper of the classic Givenchy Rottweiler tee.