There are a million things Lil Boosie could have done upon coming home from Angola, the notorious Louisiana penitentiary where he spent five years. He could have continued on the road to pop-rap stardom, becoming next in an endless line of rappers who get a shot at the radio, put out three singles that sound like all the other bullshit on the radio*, get on some remix that Ludacris and French Montana are also on for no reason, and then release an album that under performs. He could have never released another album, and instead caked off of club appearances for a couple years until he had enough stacks to retire on some island. He could have decided to pursue acting or, I don’t know, macramé.
Instead, Boosie Bad Azz decided to make music that mattered. His mixtape Live from Deathrow was one of the finest releases of last year, and found him in his darkest and perhaps best mode, that of the Bruce Springsteen of southern rural poverty—becoming the voice of the voiceless, explaining why those who society cannot understand are the way they are.
From the looks of it, his upcoming record Touch Down 2 Cause Hell will follow in that mode. “Black Rain,” the newest single from the record, is not for the radio. It is not to be blasted at your next house party (unless you’re throwing a particularly poppin’ funeral at the crib). It is music for contemplation, music meant to be given your absolute and undivided attention. Look at its cover art, finding Boosie shirtless, each link in his many chains representing a life who will never have the opportunity to speak. Boosie has taken it upon himself to speak for them. For the people who you don’t want to hear from because you don’t understand.
There is no sermonizing here, no misguided issuance of responsibility politics. Just facts.