While looking at the tracklisting of NAStalgia by Petey Cologne & J-Smoke, one song stood out among rest in a Nas tribute – “Deja Vu.” A personal favorite, the poor sound quality was just as I remembered it, rewinding and replaying it years ago on cassette tape. Just as the title suggests, the project wasn’t a primer to Olu’s son yet a time capsule to some forgotten songs that were dug up from that brown and green Timberland shoebox because, you know, you could hold more tapes in them.
“Deja Vu” is one of those songs, lost in the shuffle for its first verse inclusion in Raekwon’s “Verbal Intercourse.” You wonder why such a great 16 bars weren’t greedily saved for himself instead of added on someone else’s work. The assumption that he had to out do anything Rae and Ghost would create may have been the reason. But when listening to “Deja Vu” as well as the other selected songs on NAStalgia, you can tell why Cologne and Smoke took their time to release the project. For example, the “One Love” Sadat X remix was by far my least favorite version. But after replaying the original version so many times, hearing Sadat X yell “One Love!” in his signature voice appears more vintage Boom Bap in comparison.
NAStalgia reminds us why vinyl lovers sit on dusty stools in records shops spending hours shuffling through sleeves of forgotten albums. Finding those songs that provided the soundtrack of our childhood makes it worth the possible asbestos inhalation. The songs on NAStalgia aren’t obscure to the super-stans, but the overall production of blends and lesser known remixes is a reminder of why why liked the Queensbridge rapper in the first place.
Download — Petey Cologne & J-Smoke – NAStalgia Mixtape