Song: One Mic
Album: Stillmatic (2001)
Nas is a tough one for me.
On one had, there are tracks like this and "One Love" and "Ain't Hard to Tell" and "If I Ruled the World," joints that are pretty close to perfection.
But then there is a bunch of crap out there too, so I never know where to stand when it comes to Nasir Jones.
Truthfully, Nas is a dichotomy to most everyone in the hip hop world: he's shown over and over again that he is one of the most gifted MCs and writers around, but sometimes he'd just rather be "lazy" and do something easy.
This track is the former.
I love how it just constantly builds to energy. You get lulled to sleep by his lazy flow and then... sirens, energy, and fierce rhymes get you going only to slow back down to the Phil Collins "In the Air Tonight" sample this song is built on.
Still, you gotta give respect to someone who has been successful and meaningful in the game for as long as Nas has and there is enough quality in the vaults to make me want to go see him at Rock the Bells this summer in Vancouver.
Serious - Nas, Common, The Roots, K'naan... how could I not go? Anyone want to come with me?