Nas has been on quite the win streak lately.
Ending 2021 with another stellar collab tape with Hit-Boy in Magic — on top of recently performing at the GRAMMYs for the first time in his 20-plus year career — the New York legend keeps his immaculate run going with his new visual for “Ugly.”
As the song’s title suggests, the video paints an ugly picture of what tends to happen in low-income communities. In the stark black and white visual, Nas watches the city pass him by as his chauffeur takes him throughout the streets. He raps about the potential pitfalls one could fall into whether it be gang violence or simply falling victim to greed and envy.
They call my city Gotham City, opposite of prettyNas – “Ugly”
Weatherman cannot predict bullets rainin’ from out the 50
It’s ugly outside, Big L’d be here if it wasn’t
Hell‘ll freeze over the day it doesn’t gеt ugly out
At times, it seems as though Nas knows that this way of life is unable to change, though, he hopes for better days. The video intercuts scenes of Nas and the city with quick footage of violence and religion, showing the various sides of someone’s life living like this.
Later, he name drops Young Dolph and Marvin Gaye as two victims of such circumstances as the video winds down and footage of the city skyline is shown. It’s an all-encompassing glimpse into the ugliness society could bring about.
In other news, Nas is set to join the Wu-Tang Clan for their joint “New York State Of Mind Tour” this summer. Aside from the tour, Nas is still cooking up heat with Hit-Boy, as the pair have been teasing the next installment of their King’s Disease series. Nas even dropped a line about the new project on “Ugly” — saying how Magic was just an appetizer for KD3’s full meal.
With KD3 on the horizon, fans have much more to look forward to from one of rap’s most legendary emcees.
Check out ‘Ugly’ by Nas below!