Almost as though he felt the country careening off its axis, Kendrick Lamar unleashed “The Heart Part Four” Thursday night, from his upcoming album IV. The song is a fiery screed in which Kendrick leaves little doubt as to who currently occupies rap’s throne.
And if you think the timing of the song—which dropped less than a week after Drake’s warmly received More Life—is mere coincidence, well, think again. Kendrick wants the crown and he’s not afraid of letting everybody know it. And when he raps: ‘One, two, three, four, five, I am the greatest rapper alive’/ So damn great, motherf—er, I’ve died/ What you hearin’ now is a paranormal vibe,” it’s hard not to take him for his word.
But this is a Kendrick Lamar track, so while the typical macho bravado that’s almost a prerequisite for rap god status is definitely here, there’s more. Lamar has relished his role as rap’s de facto social conscience, and here, he takes direct aim at the biggest threat to his people:
“The whole world goin’ mad, bodies is adding up/Market’s about to crash/Niggas is fake rich, bitches is fake bad/Blacks that act white, whites that do the dab/Donald Trump is a chump, know how we feel, punk/Tell ’em that God comin’/And Russia need a replay button, y’all up to somethin’/Electorial [sic] votes look like memorial votes/But America’s truth ain’t ignorin’ the votes”
The words flow out of him like hot lava over a woozy beat, and all we can do is wonder how we’ve lasted two whole months of Trump without Kendrick chiming in, while thanking our lucky stars that he’s finally back. As long asvKendrick is here to set the record straight, we gon be alright.
Listen to “The Heart Part Four” below.