Yasiin Bey (Formerly Mos Def) Gifts Us With New Music And Last Shows

Photo: Christopher Polk (Getty Images)

Another day, another new hip album drop. Yasiin Bey (the artist formerly known as Mos Def) has finally released his latest album, December 99th.

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The long-awaited collaboration with producer Ferrari Sheppard originally was set to come out on December 9th, but the release date came and went, with the duo releasing a cryptic statement about the delay, “Dark bodies, bright crest, the kings grew nervous,” the statement reads. “A boy drew a gun, and then sold the portrait. And then used the cash to heat the stove at the palace. Soon. Very soon.”

That’s not the only weird thing about December 99th, which was recorded in South Africa, where Bey has been forced to stay for the past year because of Visa problems. For now, the album is exclusively available for Tidal subscribers, while non-subscribers can listen to new song “Blade in the Pocket” (below).

In addition, Yasiin Bey’ final two albums (before going into retirement), Negus In Natural Person and As Promised, will be debuted live at The Apollo tonight. A second show at The Apollo scheduled for Thursday night will be streamed live on TIDAL.

Bey’s release is the latest holiday gift for hip hop fans, whom in the past couple weeks have received new albums from Childish Gambino, J. Cole, and Kid Cudi.