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Saturday, December 04, 2004

All Eyez On Nas

With the absence of a proper Jay-Z album and a (relatively) disappointing show from Eminem on Encore, the onus is on Nas to deliver on behalf of the current Holy Trinity of mainstream hip-hop. Whoever delivered this news to Nas must've stressed quantity, as Nas dropped his double-album Street's Disciple on Tuesday. Of course, it's easily the most anticipated release of the 4th quarter.

Double-albums have a special place in hip-hop: you might be a confirmed superstar, but you haven't really made it in today's world if you haven't dropped your double-album. Thus Nas follows in the footsteps of Pac, Biggie, Jigga, Master P (WTF?) and Outkast. And considering that we're talking about double-CDs, these albums are longer than All Things Must Pass.

It should go without saying, then, that Nas does his fair share of stumbling. But, Street's Disciple is remarkably consistent, in the sense that there isn't much range between it's best and worst tracks. The flip-side of this is that the peaks are few and far between. Granted, I've only listened to it a few times through (it's almost 90 minutes long!), but so far the real highlight is the second single, which I present to you now:

Nas with Olu Dara - "Bridging The Gap"

What I find exhilarating about "Bridging The Gap" is that it really does attempt to bridge the gap, not just between the blues and hip-hop but also between two generations that seem to understand each other less and less. This makes "Bridging The Gap" not only the best song on Street's Disciple, but one of the best songs this year.

Nas' Website


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