Devin the Dude signs with Razor & Tie

Will release fifth album in the fall

NEW YORK -- Rapper Devin the Dude has signed a one-album deal with independent Razor & Tie and is prepping his fifth album, "Landing Gear," for release in the fall.

After 15 years, Devin the Dude left Rap-A-Lot Records in February but said there's no bad blood between he and the Houston independent label. "I'd been there for so long, there wasn't any disagreement," he said. "It was just time to try new things."

"Landing Gear" will be one of the first hip-hop projects released via Razor & Tie following their signing of Lil Jon's BME Recordings artist Shawty Putt. The independent recruited Cinematic Music Group's Jon Shapiro as their urban liaison, and Shapiro used his relationship with Devin to bring the MC to Razor & Tie. Cinematic Music Group manages R&B singer/rapper Sean Kingston.

"Razor mostly does metal and punk and I had a couple of deals on the table," Devin said. "Koch was interested but I chose to go with Razor because they made it easy and the numbers were right. While I wouldn't want to stand in line, waiting for my project to come out behind other artists, I wouldn't mind a larger label. Razor & Tie just came with a cool proposition."

Devin added that he also wasn't interested in a four- to five-year contract, which is typically the case when an artist signs with a major label. The MC says he wanted the option to release other one-off projects without being hampered by red tape.

The Coughee Brothers and the Odd Squad are crafting most of the production for "Landing Gear." Meanwhile, Devin is intent on embarking on a 30-state college market promotional tour in October. As for a video for his first single once its selected, fans might have to wait a bit longer.

"I don't do many videos," Devin said. "If we could find a treatment that works, I'm open. But, honestly, videos give me a headache."

Devin the Dude's last album, "Smoke Sessions, Vol. 1," was released in April 2008 and has to sold 6,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.