The Birth of a Nation: The Inspired By Album delivers yet another powerful and soulful release thanks to Nas and Raye’s “War.”
On his thought-provoking verses, an insightful Esco directly references Nat Turner, the revolutionary subject of the forthcoming film that inspired the track.
“Even though my name is Nas, I am like Nat,” he raps. “Is this me declaring war? White flags / I now know why I was even born / To strike back / A full moon up in the sky, that’s a sign that / It’s time to get my liberation / The perfect configuration / It’s the birth of a nation.”
The Illmatic wordsmith goes on to address incidents of police brutality around the country with his second verse. “Why doesn’t the government order capital punishment / To officers who racial profile and put slugs in us?” he asks. “Makes me think they want us extinct.”
Speaking to the presidential race, Nas also provides commentary about Republican nominee Donald Trump’s slogan. “Watch out for the traitors,” he raps. “When they say make America great again, do they mean make us all slaves again? Don’t be sidetracked.”
To cap the song off, Nas delivers a potent message about unity against injustice. “Dear America,” he begins. “It’s time for a better America. There’s a little Nat Turner in every one of us. No matter if you’re red, white, black, if you want freedom then we’re all like Nat.”
This is just the latest social commentary to come from The Birth of a Nation: Inspired By Album. Yesterday, Weezy and Guwop unleashed “Oh Lord” and Meek Mill and Pusha T linked up for “Black Moses” off the new LP.
The full project is out now and features a bevy of stars, including the aforementioned acts, as well as 2 Chainz, Vic Mensa, Lecrae, Trey Songz, Ne-Yo, Wale, Anthony Hamilton, and The Game. While the Inspired By album is out now, The Birth of a Nation is slated to hit theaters Oct. 7.
Listen to Nas declare “War” above and stream the entire Inspired By project below.