There was one message to take from the songs J. Cole unveiled in his new documentary Eyez: anybody can get it.
Friday’s release of the music video for “False Prophets” had rap fans and industry folks wondering if Cole was speaking about Kanye West, Drake, and Wale. Saturday saw the release of the documentary’s other song “Everybody Dies,” which has even more combative rhymes that confront who he sees as disingenuous, untalented rappers.
“Clap at the fake deep rappers. The OG gatekeep rappers. The would-you-take-a-break-please rappers. Bunch of words and ain’t saying shit, I hate these rappers. Especially the amateur eight-week rappers,” Cole fumes. “Lil’ whatever, just another short bus rapper. Fake drug dealers turn tour bus trappers. Napoleon complex, you this tall rappers.”
Just like on “False Prophets,” he doesn’t call out anyone by name. But lots of rappers are bound to take it personally. Many of J. Cole’s detractors have labeled him as boring, but he sounds fiery on these two new songs. Two years after his last album 2014 Forest Hills Drive, J. Cole sounds like he’s ready to step into the ring with anyone who is up for the challenge.
Eyez is a documentary that gives behind-the-scenes access into the creation of J. Cole’s recently-announced fourth studio album 4 Your Eyez Only, which arrives on Friday, Dec. 9.
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is a journalist who covers music, pop culture, film/TV, race, culture and social justice. He is an editor at Okayplayer, and his work has appeared in Complex, Billboard, Guardian, NPR, MTV, Ebony, HipHopDX, The Flint Journal-MLive, and other publications.