“Hood Blues” is the first single from DMX’s final album Exodus. The album will feature appearances from Jay-Z, Nas, Alicia Keys and more.
Beginning with lush production crafted by Swizz Beatz and Avenue Beatz, the track kicks off with X’s infamous growls. As the single settles, Westside Gunn commands control of the beat and is followed by Benny The Butcher. Up next, Conway The Machine adds his gritty touch to the song.
By the time DMX arrives, it’s clear that this track was created to bridge the gap between the past and present guttural subgenre of hip-hop that was born in New York. Over the beat he raps: “I grew up at the dark side, apartheid/Where goin’ against the grain’ll get you kidnapped and hogtied/X the illest nigga, realest nigga/Never been scared, I’m a fearless nigga/Got that cannon that’ll remove your head and shoulders.”
Later he adds, “Sometimes I can’t manage all the shit in my attic/I was promised the world but I got the dirt instead/It’s just life, I was bred to shed blood/For all my niggas that know me “Fuck you, nigga, What!”
“Hood Blues” is the latest release from DMX’s upcoming album Exodus. The late rapper was busy working on the release prior to his recent passing. Swizz Beatz hasn’t been secretive about the album which he actually is spearheading, in fact, he’s shared that it’s a “masterpiece.”
On Exodus, Swizz shared the following in a new Apple Music interview:
“I told him, I said, ‘Yo, I know you don’t like a lot of features, but I think it’s time that people should see that other people love you as well and you’re respected by serious, serious artists. Although you’re humble, although you don’t really have features, let’s have fun with it, come out the gate. Then the next album, we can get back to how you want to do it, but let’s have some fun. Let’s give them something they can’t expect.”
He added, “They’re not expecting you and Bono. They’re not expecting you and Alicia [Keys]. They’re not expecting you and Griselda. They’re not expecting you, Jay, and Nas on one track.”
The album will reportedly also feature appearances from Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg and DMX’s youngest son Exodus Simmons. On the late rapper, Swizz also shared, “It’s about him and his family legacy and his legacy. He trusted me with that. So we got to do the right thing.”
Exodus releases on Friday, May 28.
Listen to “Hood Blues” below.