On Thursday, Public Enemy surprised fans by releasing a new album a few days in advance of the previously announced date of July 4. To mark 30 years on the music scene, Nothing Is Quick in the Desert, the group’s 14th studio album, is now available for free downloads and streaming on Bandcamp.
The 13-track album serves up a host of collaborations with hip-hop veterans, including Ice-T, PMD of EPMD, Easy Mo Bee, Sammy Vegas, and Solé. In a recent interview with HipHopDx, Public Enemy’s Chuck D explained the concept behind the album title, saying, “The record business is appearing like a desert. But the music has a life if you look at it right.” In a statement given to Rolling Stone, he expanded on this comparison:
There, a cactus absorbs and stores water deep in its root, taken from the air itself and certain creatures thrive in that dry heat whereas the average cannot. It pays to be above average (or well below it) in the desert for survival. The music industry is similar in that analogy. It’s still in motion, it just needs redefinition.