"I mean, we had been in the studio with him a couple months ago, and he seemed in good spirits, so when I heard the news, for me, personally, it devastated me," Taboo said of Bennington, who was found dead on Thursday. "I was driving. I remember calling [will.i.am]. I was like, 'Dude, I can't believe this. You know, he was just in the studio with us.'"
"You know, we built a friendship with him, which is even harder, when you build a friendship outside of working with each other," Taboo continued. "So our hearts and condolences go to his family and Linkin Park."
On a lighter note, the group opened up about their new project, Masters of the Sun, a graphic novel created in collaboration with Marvel and illustrator Damion Scott, and inspired by their Comic-Con experience.
"Masters of the Sun is a heroic tale of a group of street kids who battle with an ancient alien god that was sent to Earth to continue the black curse that turns drug dealers and gangsters into zombies, and it ties to conspiracy theories," will.i.am explained. "The heroes of the story are this awesome dude and his crew, Zulu X and the Blastmasters, and they're inspired by their mentor that they find out later is a guy by the name of Master Sun."
The group's "multi-dimensional" Masters of the Sun project also includes an album, which will.i.am described as "jazzy, hip-hop, hard-rocking beats [and] deep lyrics about what’s happened in our community."
As for Fergie's involvement in the group, they said their focus for the past four years has been on the graphic novel, while Fergie has been focusing on her solo career -- but "Fergie's music is dope."