Nas is a legendary MC from Queens, New York. Recently, Esco’s legacy has been in the air due to the failures of 2018s “NASIR” and 2019s “The Lost Tapes 2”. Tonight, he has just released a brand new track titled “Ultra Black“. With the highly respected Hit-Boy behind the boards, will Nas be able to reclaim his throne?
Opening up the record their is an angelic instrumental. After a few scratches and adlibs, Nas enters the track as he talks about his new movement, called “Ultra Black”. Being the name of the song, this phrase is used as its binding philosophy. As the verse furthers, it can be drawn that the idea is supposed to empower and live through anyone who feels oppressed. The rest of this part strengthens these principles as Nas expresses his admiration for the hue and how he will apply it in his everyday life. After the hook, the record shifts tones as Nas admires colored heroes from throughout time. From actor Billy Dee Williams to the Motown pioneers, Nas pinpoints many of the positives black culture offers. This entire portion of the record is sold by the genuine and raw expression in the Queens rappers voice and delivery. Closing out the song, the same hook plays over and out one final time.
In closing, “Ultra Black” gives me hope that Nas can nail in a cohesive and thought-provoking record for the first time in nearly a decade. While not sonically blowing me away, Nas brings up a handful of interesting points and ideas that kept me thinking for the entire duration of the single. Going forward, this first ballot hip hop hall of famers twelfth solo album is only a week away, and the hype is now at an all-time high!