In celebration of the 20th anniversary of Nas' seminal 1994 debut, Illmatic, Sony Legacy is pleased to present a new special remastered vinyl reissue of the album entitled Illmatic XX. With the release of Illmatic, Nas quickly established himself as a hip hop icon. The landmark release has been lauded by critics as one of the most exemplary hip hop recordings of all time. Illmatic contributed to the revival of the New York City rap scene and has been consistently ranked near the top of many “best album” lists.
Today, the collection remains one of the most widely celebrated and influential albums in history with Rolling Stone proclaiming, "a portrait of an artist as a hood, loner, tortured soul, juvenile delinquent, and fledgling social critic... [the album] still stands as one of rap's crowning achievements.” NPR Music called the collection “[a] masterwork of story-telling, lyricism and beat-making,” while upon the album’s release, The Village Voice gave Nas the title of, "one of the most important writers of the 20th century."
“With Illmatic, I didn't think about it. I just did it. I believe everybody has good instincts. Now I’m a man from that past and I'm supremely grateful. There's a Nigerian proverb ‘What is past is prologue’. I'm here today because of Illmatic.” - Nas
Nas emerged from the Queensbridge neighborhood of Long Island City, a hotbed of rap artists since the ’80s. The son of jazz trumpeter Olu Dara, he has since gone on to sell over 20 million albums worldwide over the span of his legendary career, and has acted as an ambassador for hip-hop culture throughout the globe. Since the release of Illmatic, he has released 9 solo albums and 3 compilations all of which have been certified double-platinum, platinum and gold. His most recent release was 2012’s Life Is Good, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200, marking the sixth #1 album that Nas has produced in his career. The collection also received four Grammy nominations bringing the rap icon’s Grammy recognition count to 13 overall.
In conjunction with the release, Time Is Illmatic – a feature length documentary film that examines the album – will be released in 2014. The movie, from first-time filmmakers One9 (director/producer) and Erik Parker (writer/produer), delves into the making of Illmatic; the social conditions that created it; and the music legacy passed down from Nas’ Mississippi-born father and celebrated jazz musician, Olu Dara.
Nas Illmatic XX Track Listing:
1. The Genesis
2. N.Y. State of Mind
3. Life's A Bitch
4. The World Is Yours
6. Memory Lane (Sittin' In Da Park)
7. One Love
8. One Time 4 Your Mind
10. It Ain't Hard To Tell