Chris Brown and Nas deal with life and death on their heartfelt collaboration, “Die Young,” dedicated to the late Chinx.
Over a piano-laden instrumental, Breezy harmonizes about the chilling effects of police brutality. “Hear a gunshot sound, another black man down,” he sings. “Another innocent killed by the police / Which side are you on?”
But Brown also explores race and violence from a different perspective. “One man shouldn’t hate on another man,” he sings. “Judge no one ’cause of the color skin / Let’s stop killing each other, it’s genocide.”
As the song progresses, Chris also sings about his own mortality while reflecting on Royalty. “I’m living for my daughter,” he sings. “‘Cause my baby need a father / Don’t wanna die a young ni**a.”
Nas echoes many of these sentiments throughout his reflective rhymes. “In the projects, it’s made so we don’t progress,” he raps. “Experimental test, watch us kill each other / Film another homicide, they tape it / Nobody make it / See, he gonna kill the same lab rat he was raised with.”
Finally, Esco addresses police brutality and injustice to bring the song home. “All they wanna see is if he had coke in his blood,” he raps. “‘Cause the cops shot him / Just ’cause he came from the rock bottom / Now you see his name in the body column.”
“Die Young” also honors rapper Chinx, who was killed in a drive-by shooting at the age of 31 back in 2015. The song is not expected to appear on Heartbreak on a Full Moon, since it was not on the 40-song tracklisting Brown teased last month.