Nas and Eminem’s first collaboration arrived Friday as part of Nas’ new album King’s Disease II.
On the Hit-Boy-produced track “EPMD 2,” which also features the legendary duo, the “Rap God” shows humility as he raps about wanting to be compared to greats like JAY-Z, Lil Wayne, and Big Daddy Kane.
“I just pray for the day when I’m able to say that I’m placed with the greats / And my name’s with the Kanes, and the Waynes, and the Jays,” he raps.
Marshall Mathers also gives props to rap kings including Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Drake, and Nas himself. “And the Dres, and the ‘Yes, and the Drakes / And the J Dillas, Jadas, Cool Js, and the Ras / And amazin’ as Nas is, and praise to the Gods of this / Shout to the golden age of hip-hop and the name of this song is…”
Despite Eminem’s 25 years in the game, the lyrics surprised some fans, who already consider the Detroit rapper to be one of the GOATs.
Never seen someone so humble who’s at the top. You’re the GOAT Em!
— Ronnie Goulart (@CapeCodRon86) August 6, 2021
He’s already better than all of those guys he named tbh
— Jeremiah (@Jeremia89003268) August 6, 2021
Elsewhere on his verse, Em pays respect to hip-hop’s late legends. “RIP out to DMX, Stezo, E and Nipsey / Ecstasy and Prince Markie Dee, MF DOOM,” he raps. “I hit 50 [Cent] via text / Told him that I love him ’cause I don’t even know when I’ma see him next / Tomorrow could be your death.”
King’s Disease II, the sequel to Nas’ 2020 album, also features a rare collaboration with Lauryn Hill.
On “Nobody,” the Fugees icon addresses the criticism she has received for being notoriously late to her shows. “My awareness like Keanu in The Matrix / I’m saving souls and y’all complaining about my lateness,” raps Ms. Hill.