Black Thought Will Keep His Hot Streak Going With A New Album, ‘Glorious Game,’ With El Michels Affair

Fresh off the release of his joint album with Danger Mouse, Cheat Codes, Black Thought will continue his recent prolific streak with another collaborative album this spring. This time, he’s teaming up with El Michels Affair, a self-described “cinematic soul” band from New York best known for backing Freddie Gibbs and Madlib in their 2019 NPR Tiny Desk Concert, to release Glorious Game. The album is due April 14 through Big Crown, and accompanying the announcement, they have shared the first track, the reggae sampling “Grateful.” Check it out below.

According to a press release, Thought first met El Michels Affair frontman Leon Michels in the early 2000s, performing together at charity concerts in their respective hometown. During the pandemic, Thought reached out to Michels for new beats to record to, resulting in the foundation for Glorious Game. Michels had previously released the albums Adult Themes in 2020 and Yeti Season in 2021, as well as a handful of tribute albums covering songs from Isaac Hayes and Wu-Tang Clan. In 2020, they also reimagined Freddie Gibbs and Madlib’s Bandana on The Diamond Mine Sessions.

Meanwhile, Black Thought has been extremely prolific of late outside his role as frontman for The Tonight Show house band The Roots. While the majority of his output prior to 2018 was with The Roots, that year he put out the Streams Of Thought EPs with 9th Wonder and Salaam Remi, following up with the full-length Streams Of Thought, Vol. 3: Cane & Able produced by Sean C in 2020, then Cheat Codes last year. He’s also working on a stage show and writing for television alongside longtime production partner Questlove.