Black Star, a hip-hop rap duo made up of Talib Kweli and Yasiin Bey, has premiered their new single “Automatic” on the podcast The Midnight Miracle. The record has been produced by Madlib and occurred at the end of the second episode, according to Stereogum.
The Midnight Miracle is a new podcast that stars Kweli and Bey along with actor and standup comedian Dave Chappelle. The first two episodes were both released today, the second being exclusive to the podcast subscription service Luminary.
The video released with the single features what appears to be a start screen for the Minecraft video game, featuring an icon titled “Lunar Client” followed by two buttons that say SINGLEPLAYER and MULTIPLAYER. Near the end of the video, the mouse begins to create a “new world” within the game that is entitled “Automatic.”
The song has a strong percussion beat that drives the song. The lyrical flow is edited to make the sound just vaguely fuzzy, as if the speaker had a bit of static. The single is an intense, meaningful commentary on many of the struggles in our world, including both race and class. The song ultimately calls for that “new world” it creates in the game.
This single is the first new material we’ve seen from Black Star since their debut Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star in 1998. The duo had announced an upcoming album release back in 2018, though last year Kweli explained that it likely would not come out after all due to issues in the music industry. In working with other artists, Bey made an appearance on Navy Blue’s new single “Breathe” in January, and Kweli recently released an album with Diamond D entitled Gotham.
Photo credit Brett Padelford