Public Enemy makes a big return with their new single “State Of The Union,” which sees production from the equally legendary DJ Premier and keeps with the anti-establishment message we’ve come to know the New York collective for:
“Whatever it takes, rid this dictator, POTUS my tail, ass debater/
Prime-time Primo, rhyme-time crime, like no other, in this lifetime/
White house killer, dead in lifelines, vote this joke out, or die tryin’/
Unprecedented, demented, many president’d, Nazi gestapo dictator, defended/”
The accompanying clip is simple-yet-effective, with Public Enemy frontmen Chuck D and Flavor Flav performing the electrifying cut in black-and-white, interspersed with shots of protests, the Martin Luther King memorial in D.C., political press footage, and more.
“State Of The Union” is the first official release from Public Enemy since their fourteenth studio LP Nothing Is Quick in the Desert, which was released back in 2017. During an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, Chuck D spoke on the reemerging Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery’s deaths at the hands of police:
“Every generation has been angry. But this generation right here is connected where their voices are heard. Their voices are felt, and they’re going about doing something... This generation right here, is one that is connected. They’re connected by technology. Their feelings of anger. Their desire for change throughout the world. This is leaderless ... but there is leadership in all of these voices.”
Given the group’s socially and politically charged catalog, it’s no surprise that Public Enemy’s classics are also seeing higher levels of streams during today’s trying times. DJ Mag has reported that the 1989 classic “Fight The Power” has seen a 89% increase during the protests and riots that have been taking place across the country.
Press play on “State Of The Union” below.