Nas: Hip Hop Is Dead.

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed
I think there's already some discussion on this, but it deserves a thread of it's own...

I've been listening to this a few times now, it sounds pretty solid. Not much Salaam Remi on it, sadly, but the beats still sound pretty much the same as on the last two albums, which I think is good. I guess Nas has reached the status where any producer will make him beats that fit his style. Can't see the point of sampling "In-A-Da-Gadda-Widda" or whatever it's called on two consecutive LPs though, even if both tunes are good.

I know some people hated the family life lyrics on Street's Disciple, and even though I liked them, I like the thematical focus on this album too. The Jay-Z collab is great lyrically, even though I don't much care for the beat (never really digged rap tunes with heavy classical samples), and the tune with The Game is even better, though on both accounts you could say that Nas has the weaker verse. I can't believe all the rappers he names on "Where Are They Now"... Father MC?! I guess on the first couple of hearings the strongest tune lyrically is "Not Going Back", which delves pretty deep into the promises and illusions the American Capitalist Dream holds for marginalized people.

So, nothing groundbreaking here, but it's the fourth good-if-not-superb album in a row from Nas, which I guess is exactly what I expected.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Friday, 22 December 2006 07:45 (fourteen years ago) link

One more thing: what's with the new type of CD case? It looks pretty ugly, and the booklet is kinda hard to get out.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Friday, 22 December 2006 07:48 (fourteen years ago) link

I don't like them much either.

da mystery of sandboxin' (fandango), Friday, 22 December 2006 12:15 (fourteen years ago) link

I noticed that a few other new records have the same case too. Is that gonna be the new standard?

Anyway, the cover for the LP is almost as great as the last one:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/22/Hiphopisdead1.jpg

Tuomas (Tuomas), Friday, 22 December 2006 13:10 (fourteen years ago) link

Hip Hop is Dead Is: YOU

Hurting (A-Ron Hubbard), Friday, 22 December 2006 15:27 (fourteen years ago) link

Haha, I hadn't thought about it, but yeah, the cover is from "Hip Hop's" point of view.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Friday, 22 December 2006 16:37 (fourteen years ago) link

after Nas pushed it in a shallow grave, right before he started shovelling in the dirt.

Al (Alex In Baltimore), Friday, 22 December 2006 16:58 (fourteen years ago) link

What, the Gravediggaz were busy?

f. scott baio (natepatrin), Friday, 22 December 2006 17:04 (fourteen years ago) link

Not great outside of the tracks you'd expect ("Hip Hop is Dead," "Black Republican" and the Dre/Game song).

"Who Killed It" = what. the. fuck.

milo (milo), Friday, 22 December 2006 17:09 (fourteen years ago) link

eh, I don't really like the title track or the Game song much (that beat is terrible) but there are plenty of songs I do like ("Let There Be Light" and "Money Over Bullshit" especially).

Al (Alex In Baltimore), Friday, 22 December 2006 17:14 (fourteen years ago) link

"made it out with 200 grand, what a shcam"

this album is a total bore. only track i remotely like is 'still dreaming.' r.i.p. nas

amon (amon), Friday, 22 December 2006 23:51 (fourteen years ago) link

I like it better than God's Son

Jaufre Rudel (Jaufre Rudel), Saturday, 23 December 2006 00:12 (fourteen years ago) link

i'll listen to this some time.

deej (deej), Saturday, 23 December 2006 00:13 (fourteen years ago) link

Just heard it today. Sounds like he was going for a Black Album and ended up sounding like a blog (dude is the first person I've heard mention Oaktown's 357 besides MYSELF in the last decade (Up with hope and down with dope, suckers)).

He mainly goes back and forth between whining that no MCs are making new shit, and whining that no MCs are "respecting tradition" Sounds like every indie-rock fucker whine I've ever heard--but more importantly, every indie-rock fucker whine I've ever SAID myself, and you're probably guilty of it too.

He's really searching for hip-hop's future while trying hard enough not to alienate his fans (or his self). Wathing him struggle with hip-hop's big conundrum for 60 minutes is GREAT! I love it so much!

Whiney G. Weingarten (whineyg), Saturday, 23 December 2006 06:27 (fourteen years ago) link

Now here's where I pretend to be a hip-hop blogger:

And before you all keep sonning him for his Edward G. Robinson voice in "Who Killed It?," take a listen to "MC Blowfish" in Digital Underground's "Underwater Rhymes" ca. 1989!

Then I'd post the MP3 here.

Whiney G. Weingarten (whineyg), Saturday, 23 December 2006 06:33 (fourteen years ago) link

MC Blowfish is embarassing too!

Rodney is wise enough to know when a gift needs givin' (Rodney J. Greene), Saturday, 23 December 2006 14:20 (fourteen years ago) link

ok it's kinda odd/not-usual to hear people taks Nas to task for the content of what he says instead of the pretty-much-above-criticism quality of his rapping

Jaufre Rudel (Jaufre Rudel), Saturday, 23 December 2006 15:49 (fourteen years ago) link

You know, the more I listen to this, the more convinced I am that this is, alongside God's Son, the best album Nas has made. Maybe his best ever. Some reviewer said that it's not really a funeral for rap, it's a wake. A remembrance of all things that hip hop is built on, not just the forgotten rap pioneers but black culture in general, and I think that Nas is trying to say, hip hop is dead only if all that is lost, if it just keeps living in the perpetual now. And in that light makes using the "Apache" beat one more time, it makes sense naming all the semi-obscure rappers on "Where Are They Now", it makes sense sampling "Unforgettable", it makes sense referencing Langston Hughes and Hattie McDaniel on "Blunt Ashes", it makes sense ending the album with those gospel vocals. Maybe it's just cheap nostalgia, but I'm feeling it.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Monday, 25 December 2006 09:26 (fourteen years ago) link

Tuomas I dig it too & am confused/annoyed by haters but if you think this is better than Illmatic you are koo-koo

Jaufre Rudel (Jaufre Rudel), Monday, 25 December 2006 13:24 (fourteen years ago) link

confused/annoyed? lol. while his rapping stays the same, the beats on his albums just get worse and worse. god's son is better imhoimiohohiomhnohomo because there are some listenable beats scattered throughout, acoustic ballad w/ pac notwithstanding.

amon (amon), Monday, 25 December 2006 16:34 (fourteen years ago) link

yeah confused 'cause as I say, his rapping is still consistently excellent & it's not like his themes are any more tired & overused than anybody else's, annoyed 'cause of the predictable kill-the-father impulse that seems to cause people to post one-line dismissals instead of the more informative critique you give after you're provoked

Jaufre Rudel (Jaufre Rudel), Monday, 25 December 2006 17:22 (fourteen years ago) link

kinda surprised it even came out on time. maybe just cuz the bossman is on it. maybe jay greenlighted "who killed it" to guarantee it wouldn't overshadow the ceo's latest.

amon (amon), Tuesday, 26 December 2006 09:07 (fourteen years ago) link

Tuomas I dig it too & am confused/annoyed by haters but if you think this is better than Illmatic you are koo-koo

I've said this several times on previous Nas threads, but I don't really dig the jazzy beats of the Illmatic era (some of them are simply too mellow for me), and I prefer the sentimental, preachy Nas of today to the detached Nas of that era. I do think Illmatic is a good LP, but personally I rate God's Son and Stillmatic and this latest one above it.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Wednesday, 27 December 2006 09:11 (fourteen years ago) link

And I can't really understand the people who say Nas's beats have gotten worse and worse. I think all of his last four albums have had pretty solid beats. Yeah, there's nothing revolutionary there, but I think it's always been the case that he has beats that back up whatever he's saying rather than stealing the show for him. Nas has reached such an elder statesman status that he doesn't really need to impress the kids anymore, so he can use beats that are not flashy but have an earthy, timeless quality to them.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Wednesday, 27 December 2006 09:17 (fourteen years ago) link

http://image.allmusic.com/00/amg/cov200/drf300/f382/f38267iw4m1.jpg

Andy_K (Andy_K), Wednesday, 27 December 2006 10:14 (fourteen years ago) link

four years pass...

Can't see the point of sampling "In-A-Da-Gadda-Widda" or whatever it's called on two consecutive LPs though

miranda lambo (dealwithit.gif), Thursday, 22 December 2011 06:16 (nine years ago) link

Finnish rappers can be divided into underground and mainstream. Underground rappers rap about suburbs, drugs, politics, life, problems with authorities and so on. Mainstream rappers rap about partying, women and cars.

monomaniatee (t. silaviver), Thursday, 22 December 2011 07:20 (nine years ago) link

What does that have to with Nas?

Tuomas, Thursday, 22 December 2011 07:22 (nine years ago) link

THE WHIRLWIND OF BEEF I INHALE IT

jacques lu cunt (furnace mane), Thursday, 22 December 2011 11:04 (nine years ago) link

^^^ crucial post

nice catch cuauhtemoc blanco niño (dayo), Thursday, 22 December 2011 11:23 (nine years ago) link

i'll listen to this some time.

― deej (deej), Saturday, 23 December 2006 11:13 (5 years ago)

any news on this?

The Larry Sandbox Show (sic), Thursday, 22 December 2011 23:01 (nine years ago) link

not a good album

joey joe joe junior shabadoo, Friday, 23 December 2011 19:34 (nine years ago) link

but did you listen to it?

if you ain't gonna wash it, i ain't gonna eat it, Friday, 23 December 2011 20:45 (nine years ago) link

yes

joey joe joe junior shabadoo, Friday, 23 December 2011 21:48 (nine years ago) link

well, most of it

joey joe joe junior shabadoo, Friday, 23 December 2011 21:48 (nine years ago) link


You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.