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The Earliest Bird 6-24-22 – 6-30-22: Top New Recorded Release Lil Nas X’s “Late To Da Party” Featuring YoungBoy Never Broke Again, Reviewed

Lil Nas X has had the best 2020s of any pop artist with the exceptions of Morgan Wallen and Olivia Rodrigo, and Olivia is a little later in the iteration , she is still waiting to see if she has another one in her meanwhile Nas, who seemed destined for one hit wonderdom in 2019 when “Old Town Road” went viral and became the biggest hit of the year.

Still in 2019, he didn’t wait, dropped an excellent EP 7, and saw “Panini” take off and two years later had his smash sad vibes but happy sounds debut album Montero, with both the title track and his greatest moment so far, the breathtaking anthem “Industry Baby” about more better success, “I told you long ago, on the road I got what they waitin’ for” with a punchy above his weight “And this one is for the champions, I ain’t lost since I began, yeah, Funny how you said it was the end, yeah, Then I went did it again, yeah…” an anthem for winners like “We Are The Champions” or “Song 2” with the punch through the wall triumphant horns. Nas was right of course, he proved it and next had to prove it on stage…

Last year I saw him at Jingle Ball (here), it was impossible to overstate the case for the queer icon. More than any rapper, he has changed the landscape for gay, black men in the music industry (baby). With a chorus of half naked black male dancers surrounding him, he became the bottom with the most and Gen Z embraced him hard and not because they’re open minded but because his twenty minute set was wall to wall ear candy (Montero was on my top five albums of the year), he blows up on opener “Industry Baby” and follows it with the humongous “Old Town Road,” you’d be excused for expecting evening ender “MONTERO (Call Me by Your Name)” to be the one, but one song earlier “Lost In The Citadel” brought the house down.

In 2022, Lil Nas X has his tour, in theatres, set in place, for the US leg, September through October but despite but “Late To Da Party” is his first release of the year. It is a response to BET nominating for a total of zero of their music awards. Since 2021 found Lil Nas X one of the best selling artists in the world, which matters, but not as much with the groovy freshness and yet travails of stardom Montero. You can’t watch a sports show, a competition TV show, you can’t listen to the radio without hearing “Industry Baby” (it made Jack Harlow a superstar instantly). Lil Nas X responded with “Late To The Party” a “Fuck BET” opening chant while he pisses all over his 2020 award for best new artist and condemning the network for what he considered homophobia. Along with video (at the top), Nas added: “NBA YOUNGBOY is on house arrest. trapped on the isolated planet HATU. The brutal empire of Terror (BET) has betrayed LIL NAS X, turning their back on him after using him for clout. With the music industry in turmoil, the galaxy is looking for a new hero. NAS must use the ancient power of VIDEO EDITING to free YB and defeat the evil BET before time runs out…” Then he lives up to it with a trap delight Nas X style, rapping line to line with YB and turning his vitriol full blast on “BET”…

A great song in the typical, anthemic, declarative style we have grown to love.

Grade: A-

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