Nas - Illmatic (Happy 24th Birthday!)

Illmatic. What can we say about Illmatic

Illmatic is one of the greatest Rap Debuts of all time. It’s a coming of age tale for young Niggas across the country. I bought it when I was 13 after my friend Seun went on and on about how important Nas was.

I listened to it so much the CD started skipping so I stuck it on my bedroom wall as a bootleg decoration. Today on its 24th Birthday I took it down from my wall and put it into a friends car’s radio.

To my surprise, it worked with no skips. So with that let’s get into Illmatic.

Illmatic is an amazing album to listen to when you’re broke. This is a perfect album to play on the train to distract you from  Crackheads and Dope Fiends competing for attention. It’s enthralling because the beats are smooth and the lyrics are so deep.

Nas raps so effortlessly yet so complex, it’s like watching Will Smith solve a Rubix Cube. It’s impressive but somehow expected. You can tell that for every song on this Album there’s at least one notebook full of unused rhymes. It’s Art. Pure art.

Illmatic is so good that you forget Nas was only 20-21 when this dropped. So much talent and maturity for a guy who legally couldn’t rent a car. As a teenager it was inspiring but listening to it as an adult makes me feel like a failure. But then I remember his teeth were fucked up so I’ll always have that over Nasir.

This is the Album you listen to when you wanna do something smart like study for a test or pour cheap vodka through a water filter so you can put it in an empty Ciroc bottle. It’s enthralling. A lot of rappers were inspired by Illmatic but I’m sure this album made a lot of niggas quit too. It’s that good.

The one thing I didn’t like was when Nas rapped about robbing foreigners and ripping their green cards. Green cards are hard to get! Also you gotta be a petty bastard to rip a laminated card. It was upsetting to hear that but then I got my citizenship so now it’s one of the dopest lines to me.

Overall Illmatic is very important to hip hop and music in general. Nas is a gift to music and you’d be remiss to skip over Illmatic. I give Illmatic 10 Oowops Out Of 10.