El-P and Killer Mike have “A Few Words For The Firing Squad” on the latest single from their upcoming album, Run The Jewels 4. After giving a hip-hop history lesson alongside DJ Premier and Greg Nice with “Ooh La La” last month, the duo shift gears to address current events — or at least, the cyclical nature of state violence against citizens — on their new single, over another devastating El-P production.
Killer Mike closes the track with the titular few words — a knockout blow if ever there was one — after setting up the punchline with a few bars before delivering the crushing haymaker. “This is for the do-gooders that the no-gooders used and then abused,” he snarls. “For the truth-tellers tied to the whipping post, left beaten, battered, bruised / For the ones whose body hung from a tree like a piece of strange fruit / Go hard, last words to the firing squad was, ‘F*ck you too.’” El-P previewed the track on Instagram, recording it from his television with his phone’s camera.
Run The Jewels have never shied away from political commentary in the past, but their latest full-length LP arrives after a week of protests of police brutality — especially the recent killing of George Floyd, a former member of Houston’s Screwed Up Click.
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i’m talking now to the people that look like me. no debate no comments even. it’s a fact and right and despite it being an inalienable truth it (tragically and clearly) needs to be said again and again and again until it’s no longer something the power structure of this world or the hearts tainted by hate have to be told. don’t feel weird don’t feel like it’s not your place to say just say it because it still needs to be said and your heart knows it’s time to do that much at least. #blacklivesmatter
Listen to the new track via preview above.
Run The Jewels 4 is due 6/5 via Run The Jewels LLC and BMG Records.