Nas Life Is Good

Released July 13, 2012

Track Listing

  1. No Introduction
  2. Loco-Motive feat. Large Professor
  3. A Queens Story
  4. Accident Murders feat. Rick Ross
  5. Daughters
  6. Reach Out feat. Mary J. Blige
  7. World’s an Addiction feat. Anthony Hamilton
  8. Summer On Smash feat. Miguel and Swizz Beats
  9. You Wouldn’t Understand feat. Victoria Monet
  10. Back When
  11. The Don
  12. Stay
  13. Cherry Wine feat. Amy Winehouse
  14. Bye Baby
  15. Nasty (Deluxe Version)
  16. The Black Bond (Deluxe Version)
  17. Roses (Deluxe Version)
  18. Where’s the Love feat. Cocaine 80’s (Deluxe Version)

Review

The cover for Life Is Good has Nas sitting with a part of a green dress. That article of clothing belonged to the wedding dress of his ex-wife, Kelis. That public divorce provides the backdrop for the album. This is Nas’s return to a solo release, after his 2010 collaboration with Damian Marley, Distant Relatives.

Nas has been willing to show some venerability in his music. On God’s Son, he dedicates the song, Dance to his late mother. A lot of this album continues on what he said on Strong Will Continue from Distant Relatives. On Bye Baby, he talks about his relationship with Kelis began and ended. On Daughters, he raps about his own daughter, Destiny. He calls out his own hypocrisy and his performance as a father. Coupled with a soulful beat from No I.D., Daughters is one of the standout tracks off the album.

If Daughters isn’t the Nas you want, listen to Loco-Motive on repeat. “This for my trapped in the 90’s niggas,” as he closes the track out. Nas goes into the nostalgia lane again on Reach Out with Mary J. Blige. It’s a great homage to classic 90’s rapper/R’n’B collaborations. Joining forces with Anthony Hamilton, World’s an Addiction has a movie-type of sound to it, something similar to what we got from Distant Relatives.

The best example of storytelling comes from Accident Murders with Rick Ross:

You cocked back/
You thought you had it planned, you thought you had your man/
He saw you coming, he ran when you tried to blast that man/
You missed him by inches, he sprinted/
Some of his boys on the corner was who your bullets entered/
Two of em pull through/
But one didn’t, son’s finished/
You took the life of him/
The part about it that’s crazy, you was aight with him/
Tight with him, why was he in the way/
Why was he standing next to the enemy that specific day/

With a reference to a Nas classic in One Love, and a more than reliable verse from Rick Ross, Accident Murders is arguably the gem from the album.

Nas changes hats, putting on his ladies man persona on Cherry Wine with a posthumous feature of Amy Winehouse. Produced by Salaam Remi, the song has a timeless quality to it, punctuated by the ability of Ms. Winehouse.

No matter what mode Nas gets into on the album, he does it with quality. From reaching back to Nasty Nas, or setting the deal with his divorce straight, Nas sounds calm and collected. Certainly life is good for him and us. Let’s hope that it continues to be that way.

Life is Good

iTunes

Life is Good (Deluxe Version)

iTunes