TDE artist Ab-Soul has had the weight lifted off of his shoulders with the release of his newest project, the highly-anticipated album entitled These Days... Soul a.k.a. AbdashSoul a.k.a Black Lip Pastor a.k.a Souloho3 is Black Hippy's resident third eye specialist. He's made his way in the hip-hop community by carving out a uniquely mysterious identity, shaded behind his semi-permanent sunglasses, and focusing his lyrical energy on thought-provoking material that, to the non-enlightened listener, may seem somewhat controversial (not necessarily, but peep "Terrorist Threats" ft. Danny Brown and Jhené Aiko that he released in 2012). You may also notice the explicit religious imagery in the new album based on the cover art and this single.
There was a small amount of controversy leading up to the release of the album, though. Ab-Soul tweeted on May 1st saying that, "I'm this close to just leakin my shit like its a mixtape." The tweet was hinting at the frustration surrounding the long wait to drop one of the many projects he claims to have been working on so far in 2014. TDE CEO Antony "Top Dawg" Tiffith later replied to Soul on twitter stating, "I DARE A NIGGA ON MY TEAM LEAK HIS ALBUM.....#TDE." I guess that settled the argument.
So thank you, Top Dawg, for not allowing it to be released as a mixtape. These Days... is absolutely worth the purchase. The album features appearances from artists like fellow TDE hitters SZA, ScHoolboy Q, Kendrick Lamar, and Jay Rock. Also, Soul went and got Rick Ross, Short Dawg, Action Bronson, and Lupe Fiasco, among others to contribute to his extensive list of features on the 15-track record (the 15th track, "W.R.O.H.", is only available with the purchase of the album). Not to mention the album's production which includes work from J. Cole, Larry Fisherman, Terrace Martin, and Purity Ring to name a few. I feel like the features and production alone can tell you how important this release is to TDE and hip-hop as a whole.
May your third eye remain open. You can stream These Days... here.