Late this past Thursday, Kendrick Lamar dropped his first new track since the 2016 release of Untitled. Unmastered, a compilation of previously recorded tracks ranging from the period after good kid m.A.A.d city, to his To Pimp a Butterfly sessions. The new track, titled “The Heart Part IV”, is nearly 5 minutes of rapid fire rhyming against an at times hard and heavy, and other times funky baseline. Check out the audio below:
The song was partially inspired by James Brown’s “Don’t Tell a Lie About Me and I Won’t Tell the Truth On You”, which Kendrick uses as a chorus between verses before really going in on Donald Trump, the current state of madness he feels in the world, his pedestal in the rap game, and more. “Donald Trump is a chump / Know how we feel, punk / Tell ’em that God comin’ / And Russia need a replay button, y’all up to something,” he raps, referring to the Trump presidential campaign’s alleged ties with Russia.
But the most exciting line of Kendrick’s “The Heart Part IV” is the very last line, which is “y’all got ’til April 7th to get y’all sh*t together”.
Since “The Heart Part IV” dropped, the internet has been in a frenzied speculation as to what he meant by the date. Will Kendrick Lamar release his new LP on April 7th? Or another hard-hitting diss track? In addition to the rumors that started flying around Kendrick’s upcoming album, rappers and producers in Kendrick’s main circle began opening up about their knowledge of Kendrick’s next LP.
According to producer Syk Sense, some of the music Kendrick was considering for his upcoming album is “some of the hardest sh*t I’ve heard.” He conceits to say that he only knows the beats Kendrick was weighing and doesn’t know what actually made it onto the album, but considering the harder tracks we’ve seen from Kendrick in the past (“Untitled 07”, “The Blacker the Berry”, “m.A.A.d city”) we don’t doubt that he’s possibly reserved his grittiest, most aggressive tracks for this third LP. Especially considering how different the state of the country is since TPAB.
When asked if Kendrick’s new album resembled past material that veered towards the heavier side, Syk replied, “In a way. But it’s on some different shit. I don’t even know how to explain it. I can’t wait either to be honest, because Kendrick is such an elevated mind, you just never know.”
The day after “The Heart Part IV” dropped, Apple Music’s head artist curator Carl Chery published on Instagram a photo of himself listening to music, with Kendrick sitting just a few feet away, his head bowed, listening too. The caption and the photo lead us to believe that Kendrick will in fact be dropping a whole album on April 7th. Check out the post below:
If Kendrick is making moves and playing new music for Apple employees, we think it could be for something much bigger than a few singles. Or at least that’s what we’re hoping for, because we know the world is definitely ready/ in need of another Kendrick record. Another hint to a possible new LP from Kendrick Lamar on April 7th is that the Compton rapper is set to headline Coachella, a music festival that famously takes up two weekends in April and will begin just one week after Kendrick needs us to have our sh*t together. And if Kendrick does drop his album a week before April 14th, it would be the perfect amount of time for fans to soak up his new music and rhymes and get adequately psyched for the festival.
On the other hand, Kendrick released “i” six months ahead of TPAB, which is drastically longer than the two weeks between now and April 7th. Has Kendrick cut down the time between lead singles and album releases, following suit with other artists who are dropping their albums to fan surprise? Or, do we have another six months before we see the full LP? Only time will tell. But just remember: y’all got ’til April 7th to get you sh*t together.