Black Star’s Madlib-Produced Album Gets A Title & Release Date
After years in the making, Black Star’s sophomore album has a title and release date. Yasiin Bey and Talib Kweli are scheduled to follow-up their 1998 debut nearly 25 years later with No Fear Of Time. As anticipated since early 2018, the Brooklyn, New York duo is teaming with producer Madlib for this go-round—which is slated to arrive May 3.
The news arrives with a short video, showcasing some music:
Yasiin Bey & Talib Kweli Detail How Black Star’s Upcoming Album Came To Be
In a press statement published by Pitchfork, Talib Kweli said, “About three-to-four years ago I was visiting Yasiin [Bey] in Europe and we started to talk about songs to do on an album, so I flew an engineer out just to see what that would be. Once I realized this conversation is starting to organically become a creative conversation, I started making sure to have the engineer around at all times. There was one day we were just in a hotel listening to Madlib beats, and he’s like, ‘Play that Madlib tape again.’ I’m playing the beats and he starts doing rhymes to the beats. And that’s how we did the first song.”
Kweli’s statement continues, “This is very similar to how we did [Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star]. But the first album, there were no mobile studios. This entire album, we have not set foot in one recording studio. It’s all been done in hotel rooms and backstage at Dave Chappelle shows.”
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While 1998’s go-round featured production from Hi-Tek, 88-Keys, J. Rawls, and others, Madlib is expected to helm the whole ’22 affair. The Oxnard, California veteran previously laced Liberation for Kweli in 2006, and has worked with Yasiin Bey on The Ecstatic three years later.
With Rawkus Records having been defunct for nearly 15 years, this LP is said to arrive through podcast platform Luminary. There, both MCs host a podcast alongside Dave Chappelle, The Midnight Miracle. Yasiin Bey has gone outside of the normal release structure previously. In 2019, he premiered NEGUS as an art exhibit. Last year, Kweli partnered with D.I.T.C. veteran MC/producer Diamond D to release Gotham, in a more traditional rollout. In 2019, Madlib and Freddie Gibbs dropped Bandana—named the best LP of that year by Ambrosia For Heads readers.
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#BonusBeat: An AFH exclusive of Talib Kweli discussing the genius of MF DOOM and Madlib’s Madvillainy: