Legendary hip hop outfit Public Enemy have returned with their new album Man Plans God Laughs.
Scheduled to drop in physical formats on the 25th of July, you can listen to the album now via the Spotify stream below and download it from RapCentralStation.com
PE have also released a hard-hitting video for the album’s title cut. The clip tracks the life of a young boy as he seeks to understand his place in a world filled with varying degrees of violence, Chuck D’s lyrics narrating the existential quest: “Am I radical, am I pacifist? / Am I scared to fight? / I ain’t asking you / Am I grown? Do I stand up? / Am I owned?”
Responding to his environment as he grows up, the video’s protagonist contemplates committing an armed robbery, but, inspired by the words of a teacher from his past, ultimately drops his weapon and leaves. The piece ends with the young boy fully grown, holding his young daughter in his arms.
Speaking recently with Rolling Stone, Chuck D said that Man Plans God Laughs was inspired by the Kanye West and Rick Rubin’s work on Yeezus, as well as El-P and Killer Mike’s Run the Jewels and Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly. In interview with Maxim he qualified the comments, adding: “but [we] stayed far enough away from them to still be Public Enemy. We’re making a comment about the 21st century in this technological yet still political world. It will be able to tell its own story without me trying to talk to it.”
Man Plans God Laughs is Public Enemy’s first album since 2012’s The Evil Empire of Everything, and is the first time since 1991 that the group have worked with just one producer on an LP. Gary “G-Wiz” Rinaldo produced the new material, having worked with Public Enemy before on 2007 single “Harder Than You Think.”