Black Thought flexes his vocal chops on “Conception”

You already knew the Roots man could rap his ass off, but did you know he could belt?

Black Thought is one of the most lyrical and eloquent wordsmiths working in rap today—his legendary Hot 97 freestyle told us as much. But he’s also an impressive crooner, as this new track “Conception” proves.

The new song, taken from his forthcoming EP Streams of Thought Vol 2, was written with veteran producer Salaam Remi, and features the mysterious Reek Ruffin, whom fans are speculating is the Roots rapper’s singing alter ego. Over low, moody horns, Ruffin croons the tortured chorus: “Where I go, where I go from here? I could be nowhere / And trust that all that money’s good for nothin’ if you’re scared.”

On the verses, the MC—real name Tariq Trotter—raps dense, brooding bars about the flipside of success (“Security is just a whole ’nother animal / I can’t assume Xanadu had a panic room”) and how nothing comes easy, or as he puts it: “No conception’s immaculate, man.”

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Streams of Thought Vol 2 is out November 26. Stream “Conception” here:

And you can watch the music video below, if you’re a TIDAL subscriber:

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