Music

Gang Starr Announce Their First Album In 16 Years And Release The ’90s Throwback, ‘Bad Name’

Gang Starr will release their eighth studio album and first in 16 years next month. One of the Best Yet will be available on all streaming platforms on November 1. A lot has changed for the group since the release of their last album, The Ownerz, in 2003, with the passing of founding member Guru in 2010 and the state of mainstream hip-hop moving away from the gritty, hardcore bars that ruled the genre in the early ’00s.

That said, Gang Starr was never a group that relied on mainstream appeal and that’s evident on their latest single “Bad Name,” released Friday in anticipation of their forthcoming album. “Bad Name” is a ’90s-vibe track that could be mistaken as a lost file from that time that was just rediscovered in 2019, with the chorus contributing to that theory: “Word to God, if Big and ‘Pac was still here / Some of these weirdos wouldn’t act so cavalier,” The late Guru says. “We all know that the game has changed / It’s crazy out here, rap’s got a bad name.”

One of the Best Yet will feature Q-Tip, Talib Kweli, Royce Da 5’9”, M.O.P., and Jeru The Damaja, with exclusive production from DJ Premier. In addition to announcing their new album and releasing a new track, Gang Starr collaborated with current hip-hop heavyweight J. Cole on “Family and Loyalty,” a tribute to Guru. Check out that video and the album tracklist below

1. “The Sure Shot”
2. “Lights Out” feat. M.O.P.
3. “Bad Name”
4. “Hit Man” feat. Q-Tip
5. “What’s Real” feat. Group Home & Royce Da 5’9”
6. “Keith Casim Elam” (Interlude)
7. “From A Distance” feat. Jeru The Damaja
8. “Family and Loyalty” feat. J. Cole
9. “Get Together” feat. Ne-Yo & Nitty Scott
10. “NYGz/GS 183rd” (Interlude)
11. “So Many Rappers”
12. “Business Or Art” feat. Talib Kweli
13. “Bring It Back Here”
“One Of The Best Yet (Big Shug Interlude)
14. “Take Flight (Militia Pt. 4)” feat. Big Shug & Freddie Foxxx
15. “Bless The Mic”

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