No cinephiles, Francis Ford Coppola has not announced another installment to his iconic Godfather film series. But musically, Nas and Dave East have blessed us with a lyrical display worthy of carrying the name in “Godfather 4.”
Although officially a track for East’s upcoming Survival project, this has the feel of a Nas solo track as we get 2 full verses with East also having two and closing matters in the coveted final spot. In a period where we’re lucky to get rap songs over two and a half minutes, three verses in itself give the track a vintage feel.
Production-wise, DJ Green Lantern’s dreamy, orchestral arrangements immediately bring to mind Rick Ross at his luxury-rap best. It inspires Nas to pack his first verse with diverse imagery ranging from young emcees hungry to push out their idols (And rap intelligent but then it’s just a low percent who blow on some Nas, B.I.G., and Hova shit….Dissin’ your idols kills your future ‘less your idol suped-up/ Jamaica Ave, Nas, cherry drop, couped up…) to seances with dead ancestors (My dead granddad came to my cousin through a psychic/ I don’t really like it, pay prices for afterlife advisements…).
The way Nas attacks this will remind you of his phenomenal performance on Swizz Beatz’s “Echo” last year and give more credence to the idea that these are type of beats that really inspire Nas these days. And if that’s the case, it lends more credence to the idea floated by some (mostly on social media) that a Rick Ross-curated Nas project (ie. “let Ross pick most of the beats”) might be the move.
As for East, he’s equally effective in the last verse despite going for a simpler theme. He narrates the scene of relaxing on a private jet decked out with beautiful women and it works perfectly with the beat.
The pilot cool, I snuck in the cabin so I could see the storm
Joe Clark the one that they leanin’ on
I just took my shoes off
Shorty across the aisle look like Lena Horne
Dave East’s Survival drops November 8 on Def Jam.