Album Review- Nas and Damien Marley- Distant Relatives

Nas is one of the more star-crossed artists in hip-hop. Almost everyone agrees he is a great MC, by that same token damn near everyone has said Fuck Nas at some point, artists and fans alike. Artists because of his opinions, and fans because of his inconsistency. In the face of his last major label release, "Untitled" or "Nigger" as it is really called, the commercial failure it was, seemed to ring a bell of sorts for Esco's career. It seemed that he was finally going to go the way of the dinosaur and become extinct. However, Nas has gone more the way of the Ghost(face) and prepped an album that is more directed at his core fanbase which happens to coincide with that of Damien Junior Gong Marley with whom he decided to make this album with, and it fits.

The album starts off with "As We Enter" an up-tempo song that finds Nas and Damien going back and forth to bring in the album. "Strong Will Continue" has a beat that sounds like the soundtrack for a movie while "Count Your blessings" is a song that will fit right in behind the Frankie Beverly and Maze at the family cookouts this summer. The good thing about the songs on the album for the most part is the titles speak for themselves.

"Dispear", "Nah Mean", and "Patience are all solid songs. Features include Dennis Brown on "Land of Promise", and Stephen Marley on "Leaders" and "In His Own Words". K'naan also shows up on two strong songs, "Tribal War" and "Africa Must Wake Up", however, the strongest song on the album for me is the anthem "My Generation" which also features Joss Stone and Lil' Wayne.

I'm not going to pretend I know or understand the most of reggae due to the accents and cadence so most of my critique of the album is based around Nas and the feel of the album. The feel however is decidedly reggae however it does have good beat selection which means it must be obvious that Nas was just told to come in and spit his raps. If you're a fan of conscious reggae and you like Nas this is an album for you, Gucci and Wacka Flocka fans need not apply.

Rating: 3.5/5


  1. It's the best album in 2010 so far for me. I can listed in forth and back and each single track is amazing! Check out the guitar during Nas's verses in "Count your blessings". Rap with reggae can really go together

  2. Yeah it works together very well as an album i thought but sometimes I'm not with the reggae just because I don't know what he is saying all of the time. It was a simple album but sometimes simple is good.

  3. good review man definitely like Tribal War its good to see Knaan doin his thing with nas n damian.


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