J. Cole & Bas Are From A Hip-Hop Tribe Where Being Able To RAP Still Matters (Video)
For Hip-Hop Heads, especially Dreamville fans, Friday (August 24) is an exciting day. Longtime label artist Bas will release his third album, Milky Way. The Queens representative who appeared on J. Cole’s “New York Times” alongside 50 Cent more than five years ago has steadily built a following of his own. 2014’s Last Winter and 2016’s Too High To Riot have been jewels in the Dreamville discography, with the latter breaking into the Top 50.
Historically, Bas albums have been mostly in-house affairs as far as guests and production. The 31-year-old MC seemingly always has Cole on there. That will be the case with Milky Way, evidenced by “Tribe.” Shot in Lagos, Nigeria, Bas is in a celebratory mood. From friends to good women, the Paris, France-born artist professes that he is in a great place as he takes audit from a turquoise 1955 Ford Thunderbird roadster. He and Cole kick it with the locals, celebrating with a drum circle, a school-bus of kids, and just taking to the streets. The visual is bright and colorful.
Meanwhile, the beat is mellow and acoustic, but the percussion drops in right as both MCs deliver their bars. Almost five months after K.O.D., Cole spits about being in his own pinnacle place. “I’m hella faded, I’m hella faded / These ni**as been hating, I don’t know the reason now / Sometimes I feel jaded / They don’t see the real me They only know Cole, they only know Co-ole / I had to get back, I had to resort to turning my back / I’m doing just that, true that I thought / He was through with me, but that wasn’t true / The proof? You in the coupe with me / God shuffled the cards, dealt me a hand with impossible odds / Put an obstacle course up Look, and I conquered them all.” According to Rap Genius, the song is produced by Cole and Childish Major.
At a time when so many labels rely on quick hits, Bas has been a slow and consistent burn. From his Quarter Water Raised Me mixtapes, the message and authenticity was never compromised. Cole was a believer, and Fiend Bassy has been a doer. That appears to be the rule in the Dreamville tribe, which now includes Cozz, J.I.D., Omen, Lute, EARTHGANG, and Ari Lennox.
Milky Way also features A$AP Ferg. Previous single, “Pinball II,” is currently part of the official Ambrosia For Heads playlist.