Swollen Members

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Swollen Members
Swollen Members performing in January 2010
Swollen Members performing in January 2010
Background information
OriginVancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Years active1990 (1990)–present
LabelsPCP Productions, Suburban Noize, Virgin Records
Past members

Swollen Members is a 4-time JUNO Award-winning Canadian hip hop group from Vancouver, British Columbia, consisting mainly of Madchild and Prevail. Frequent collaborators include vocalist Moka Only (who was actually a member of the group for a short period of time in the mid-1990s when the group was formed, and then again from 2002 to 2005) along with the other former members Easy Roc & Zodak who were only in the group for a few years and producer Rob the Viking, an official group member since 2002. Swollen Members has released nine studio albums, one greatest hits album and 2 compilations, as well as numerous other singles. From 1996 to 2016, Swollen Members were the second best-selling Canadian hip hop artist in Canada (behind Drake) and were the best-selling Canadian hip hop group in Canada.[1]


Foundation and single releases[edit]

Swollen Members was founded in 1995 by Vancouverites Madchild (Shane Bunting), Prevail (Kiley Hendriks), and Moka Only (Daniel Denton). Having begun a solo career while living in San Francisco, California, Madchild returned to Vancouver to work. There he met Prevail and Moka Only, who had been working together. He joined together. The group had to decide on a name and Moka Only suggested Swollen Members as a joke and it stuck.

The group began testing the international hip-hop waters by releasing four 12-inch vinyl singles on Madchild's own indie label Battleaxe Records initially distributed by New York-based Fat Beats; the singles sold approximately 10,000 copies each.

2001-2002: Second album and mainstream success[edit]

Following Balance, Swollen Members recorded and released Bad Dreams, released on November 13, 2001, and featuring guests such as Chali 2na of Jurassic 5, Son Doobie, Joey Chavez, and former member Moka Only. It appealed to both underground and mainstream audiences, reaching platinum status in Canada. The album earned Swollen Members their second Juno Award and four MuchMusic Video Awards including best rap video, best director and best independent video.[2]

2002-2003: Monsters in the Closet[edit]

2002's Monsters In the Closet, their third release, brought official group membership for Moka Only and Rob The Viking to Swollen Members. Monsters in the Closet was a collection of B-sides and outtakes along with three new songs, "Breathe" which featured Portuguese Canadian pop singer, Nelly Furtado. Production credits include Evidence from Dilated Peoples. In January 2003, Swollen Members signed with Virgin Records.[3]

2003-2004: Heavy[edit]

In 2003, the band released Heavy. In the same year the songs "All Night" and "Deep End (Utah Saints Remix)" were featured in the videogame SSX3. In 2004, the Swollen Members song "The Bottom Line" was featured in the video games WWE Day of Reckoning and WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw.

2005-2006: Black Magic[edit]

In 2005, Moka Only decided to break off from the group for a second time and continue work on his solo career. The following year, Swollen Members released their fifth full album, Black Magic. It is understood that Madchild and Prevail made an attempt to return to their previously critically acclaimed style and method. Their previous album Heavy was unlisted on their official site discography. A single from the album, "Put Me On (feat. Everlast)", was released in August 2006. Later that year, Nettwerk Management dropped the group due to Madchild's affiliation with the Hell's Angels.[4]

2009-2010: Armed to the Teeth[edit]

Armed to the Teeth was released October 27, 2009 through Kottonmouth Kings label Suburban Noize Records. Featured artists on the album include La Coka Nostra, Talib Kweli, Tech N9ne, Tre Nyce, and a return of Moka Only on the previously released track, "Red Dragon". This release was followed by a North American tour with Australian Hip-Hop group Bliss 'n' Eso.

2011-2012: Dagger Mouth[edit]

Swollen Members scheduled the release of a studio album, Dagger Mouth, for April 2011, under Suburban Noize. Its first single is "Mr. Impossible".[5] The second single released off Dagger Mouth is "Bring Me Down" which features rapper Saigon. A compilation album titled Monsters 2 was released August 2, 2011.

2013: Beautiful Death Machine[edit]

On March 19, 2013, their ninth studio album, Beautiful Death Machine was released, and had debuted at number 3 on the Canadian Albums Chart, making it the group's highest charting album in Canada to date.

2014: Brand New Day[edit]

June 17, 2014 brought their tenth studio album Brand New Day to store shelves across the world. In mid-February 2015, Madchild was listed on the King of the Dot BO5 card against the battle rapper by the stage name of Daylyt. Footage of his trailer for this event can be found on the KOTD Entertainment channel on YouTube.[6] The footage of the battle can be seen on the KOTD YouTube channel.[7]

2018: "Bank Job" + other projects[edit]

In 2018, the Swollen Members single "Bank Job" was released on all platforms, followed by several solo releases by Madchild and Prevail and Rob the Viking's new project XL The Band.

In 2021 Swollen released a single and music video for "Tetris" featuring Neph. Since then Madchild has been focused on solo releases, and Prevail and Rob the Viking have been focused on XL The Band.

Group members[edit]


Studio albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
CAN U.S. U.S. Heat U.S. Ind.
  • Released: May 31, 1999
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
Bad Dreams
  • Released: November 13, 2001
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
Monsters in the Closet
  • Released: November 12, 2002
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
  • Released: November 18, 2003
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
Black Magic
  • Released: September 12, 2006
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
22 19 21
Armed to the Teeth
  • Released: October 27, 2009
  • Label: Battle Axe Records, Suburban Noize
19 146 5 23
Dagger Mouth
  • Released: April 12, 2011
  • Label: Battle Axe Records, Suburban Noize
15 3 41
Beautiful Death Machine
  • Released: March 19, 2013
  • Label: Battle Axe Records, Suburban Noize
3 167 3 26
Brand New Day
  • Released: June 17, 2014
  • Label: Battle Axe Records
8 7


Year Album
Greatest Hits: Ten Years of Turmoil
  • Released: March 16, 2010
  • Label: Battle Axe Records, Suburban Noize
  • Released: December 6, 2011
  • Label: Battle Axe Records, Suburban Noize


Year Single Peak chart
1999 "Front Street" Balance
2000 "Camouflage"
"Lady Venom"
2001 "Take It Back" Bad Dreams
"Fuel Injected"
2002 "Bring It Home" 3
"Steppin Thru" Monsters in the Closet
"Breath" (featuring Nelly Furtado)
"Fuel Injected (Remix)" (featuring Saukrates)
2003 "Watch This" Heavy
2006 "Black Magic" (featuring DJ Swamp) Black Magic
"Too Hot" (featuring DJ Babu)
"Put Me On" (featuring Everlast and Moka Only)
2009 "Warrior" (featuring Tre Nyce and Young Kazh) 94 Armed to the Teeth
"Red Dragon"
"Bollywood Chick" (featuring Tech N9ne and Tre Nyce)
2010 "Pornstar" (featuring Tre Nyce)
2011 "Mr. Impossible" Dagger Mouth
"Bring Me Down (Swollen Mix)" (featuring Saigon)
"Night Vision"
"Do or Die"
"War Money"
2013 "Kings of Diamonds" Beautiful Death Machine
"Almost Famous"
2018 "Bank Job" TBA (2018)
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Guest appearances[edit]

List of non-single guest appearances, with other performing artists, showing year released and album name
Title Year Other artist(s) Album
"S and M on the Rocks" 1999 Blazing the Crop
"Artillery" 2007 Infected Mushroom Vicious Delicious
"Lost in the Music" 2012 Insane Clown Posse Mike E. Clark's Extra Pop Emporium
"Falling Down" 2013 Twiztid A New Nightmare
"The Plague" 2015 Prozak, Ubiquitous Black Ink

Music videos[edit]

Year Song Director(s) Album
2000 "Lady Venom" Trevor Cornish Balance
2001 "Take It Back" Wendy Morgan Bad Dreams
"Deep End" Jason Goldwatch
2002 "Bring It Home" Wendy Morgan Monsters in the Closet
"Fuel Injected" Wendy Morgan Bad Dreams
"Steppin Thru" Wendy Morgan Monsters in the Closet
"Breathe" (feat. Nelly Furtado) Todd McFarlane
2003 "Watch This" Heavy
2006 "Too Hot" Black Magic
"Put Me On" (feat. Everlast) Margaret Malandruccolo
2009 "Warrior" (feat. Young Kazh) Chad Archibald & Philip Carrer Armed to the Teeth
"Bollywood Chick" (feat. Tech N9ne)
2010 "Pornstar" Chad Archibald & Philip Carrer
2011 "Mr. Impossible" Mr. Invisible Dagger Mouth
"Bring Me Down (Swollen Mix)" (feat. Saigon) Mr. Invisible
"Night Vision"
"Do or Die"
2013 "King of Diamonds" D-Shot Beautiful Death Machine
"Mercenary" D-Shot
"Inception" D-Shot
"Almost Famous" D-Shot
"BAX WAR" D-Shot
"Death Warrant" D-Shot
"Fear" (feat. Snak the Ripper) D-Shot
2014 "Power" Brand New Day
"Brand New Day" Dale Resteghini

Awards and recognition[edit]

Juno Awards[edit]

  • 2007 – Rap Recording of the Year (Black Magic)
  • 2003 – Rap Recording of the Year (Monsters In The Closet)
  • 2002 – Best Rap Recording (Bad Dreams)
  • 2001 – Best Rap Recording (Balance)

MuchMusic Video Awards[edit]

  • 2003 – MuchVIBE Best Rap Video ("Breathe" feat. Nelly Furtado and directed by Todd McFarlane)
  • 2002 – MuchVIBE Best Rap Video ("Fuel Injected" feat. Moka Only and directed by Wendy Morgan)
  • 2002 – MuchMusic Best Director ("Fuel Injected" feat. Moka Only and directed by Wendy Morgan)
  • 2002 – MuchMusic VideoFACT Award ("Fuel Injected" feat. Moka Only and directed by Wendy Morgan)
  • 2002 – MuchMusic Best Independent Video ("Fuel Injected" feat. Moka Only and directed by Wendy Morgan)

Western Canadian Music Awards[edit]

  • 2011 – Western Canadian Music Awards Outstanding Rap/Hip Hop Recording ("Dagger Mouth")
  • 2004 – Western Canadian Music Awards Outstanding Rap/Hip Hop Recording ("Heavy")
  • 2003 – Western Canadian Music Awards Outstanding Rap/Hip Hop Recording ("Monsters In The Closet")
  • 2003 – Western Canadian Music Awards Outstanding Video ("Breathe" feat. Nelly Furtado)

Additional awards[edit]

  • 2003 – COCA Campus Entertainment Awards Entertainer of the Year
  • 2002 – Canadian Radio Music Awards Breakthrough Artist ("Fuel Injected" feat. Moka Only)
  • 2002 – West Coast Music Awards Best Urban Release (Bad Dreams)
  • 2002 – The Georgia Straight Readers Choice Best Urban Act

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "NIELSEN MUSIC & BILLBOARD PRESENT CANADA 150 CHARTS" (PDF). bdsradio.com. p. 28. Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  2. ^ "Swollen Members Clean Up At MuchMusic Awards" Billboard June 2002
  3. ^ "Swollen Members Hash Out Deal With American Major". Chart Attack. Archived from the original on June 27, 2003. Retrieved February 3, 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  4. ^ Woo, Andrea. "Conversations: Swollen Members" Archived 2012-07-09 at archive.today, "Exclaim!" November 2009.
  5. ^ "Swollen Members - Mr Impossible - Listen/Watch Now". MusicRemedy/. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  6. ^ KOTD - #BLACKOUT5 - ANNOUNCEMENT #10. YouTube. 18 December 2014. Archived from the original on 2021-12-12. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  7. ^ "KOTD - Rap Battle - Madchild vs Daylyt #Blackout5". YouTube. Archived from the original on 2021-12-12. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  8. ^ a b c "Music Canada Certifications". Music Canada. Retrieved March 10, 2016.
  9. ^ "Swollen Members". Allmusic. Retrieved November 20, 2013.

External links[edit]