Friday, May 16

How will Nas top his declaration that a nuclear winter had smothered

hip-hop in a patina of blinged-out bone dust and ashen rhyme

structures? That it had lost its way traveling through the back alleys

of imagined ghettos slimed with sonic sameness and lameness? That it

was—yup—dead? By dropping the n-word, of course. Apparently that's the

title of his upcoming album, and that's the only way he could've

generated the kind of public squabbling and squawking his last

release, Hip Hop Is Dead, did. (One wonders how many white liberal

music scribblers—like me—will cringe at having to write, let alone

say, the new title. Thanks a bunch, dude.) And yet there it is—the

ghost of America's slave-trading past, rattling its chains in the

digitized flows of one of the game's greatest. But then again, what

did we expect from the "Last Real Nigga Alive"? With D. Black, Grynch,

DJ Nphared. Showbox SODO, 1700 First Ave. S., 382-7877. 8:30 p.m. $37

adv./$40. All ages. KEVIN CAPP

Fri., May 16, 8:30 p.m., 2008

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