I almost feel bad for Nas. He was 20 years old when dropped Illmatic, an album that is invariably brought up in the conversation of the greatest rap album of all time. For my money, that award either goes to My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy or The Low End Theory but that’s just me. Illmatic‘s definitely in my top 5 though. He’s had to live up to impossibly high standards for the last 20 years, and that’s got to drag on someone’s career. He could release a perfectly good album, but people will always say, “It’s not as good as Illmatic or Stillmatic.” His newest album, Life Is Good, may finally bring that conversation to a close. Not that it’s better than his older work (I wouldn’t go that far), but we’re finally so far removed from his classics that we can appreciate Nas by his own merits. He’s got a new track off the newest record (which is really great) called “Daughters” that’s probably his best track since “Life’s a Bitch.” It’s the sort of raw, honest, and real shit that made Nas so famous in the first place and it takes some chutzpah to tell such a tender and personal story in the machismo world of hip-hop.

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