Nas has largely done everything there is to do in rap music. He’s beefed with Jay-Z. He made up with Jay-Z. He’s collaborated with Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Puff Daddy, Busta Rhymes, Ludacris, and basically everyone else who has been important in rap music the last 25 years. But perhaps his most ambitious task is his latest, to rap over Al Jarreau’s cover of Dave Brubeck‘s “Blue Rondo à la Turk.”
Written in 9/8 time, its a highly unusual time signature for a rap song (most are in standard 4/4 time). When he tries to follow the rhythm and melody of the original song, “Jarreau Of Rap (Skatt Attack)” shows how versatile a rapper Nas truly is. Unfortunately, there are times where he loses the rhythm a bit (most notably towards the end of the first verse) and the track starts to feel messy. The track is a great idea and largely well executed but it could’ve used a little more polish.