As Nas promoted this album with subtlety, many wondered what to expect from a living rap legend in a time where hip hop is constantly debated. What to expect from a man who was apart of one of the most influential rap beefs of our time?
Nas reminds you of what hip-hop used to be. From the production to the lyricism, Life Is Good romanticizes the ’90s hip-hop era and brings heads to a halt as you stop to actually listen to the lyrics.
Nas has very little features from other rappers with the exception of “Accident Murders” featuring Rick Ross and “Summer on Smash” which features and was produced by Swizz Beatz. Though the album is a classic in its current environment, “Loco-Motive” reminded you of the era music is in. Nas couldn’t help but to implement that dreaded rap pattern that has become popular again thanks to rappers like Young Money,
“i rock rubies – amethyst; your wife’s a groupie- scandalous; this for my real hood (girls) – ghetto glamorous”.
Nas stays true to his storytelling formula in “A Queens Story” and “Accident Murderers”. Nas proves that he can talk about past situations that still have relevance to his fans.
“Daughters” proved to the world that it’s hard on parents as children grow older in today’s society. Whether, Destiny or her mother approved of the song, it definitely makes the young people think about how following the trends can be unproductive to our future.
Mary J Blige took us back to “Love is All We Need” days in “Reach Out”, Anthony Hamilton brings the perfect amount of soul to “World’s An Addiction”, and “You Wouldn’t Understand” feat Victoria Monet is a beautiful song that leads back into the ‘New York’ essence of hip hop with songs like “Back When” and “The Don”. Nas does show off a little, but no successful hip hop album wouldn’t be complete without at least one song describing their foreign luxury experiences.
Songs like “Stay” “Cherry Wine” describe love gained and lost. We don’t have to assume “Bye Baby” is about Kelis, because Nas touches on everything from their wedding to Kelis’ personal problems.
Nas is constantly dropping jewels to the younger generations, something rare in today’s music. With the recent success of ‘lean and bling’ music, it’s not surprising that Nas didn’t succumb to any of the popular production that we hear daily because looking back in time at Nas’ work, Nas stayed true to himself, a storyteller liberating the hood through a musical blueprint, not assisting the youth in a path that leads to self destruction.