The Game is confident that his long-awaited album Drillmatic: Heart vs. Mind will be iconic. After all, the West Coast rapper said one of the influences for the album is none other than revered lyricist Nas.

The journey to crafting the album began two years ago when The Game first conceived the name Drillmatic. However, at the time he had no intention of using it for his own project. “Originally, I gave Drillmatic to Durk because he’s from the Chi and it has the whole drill thing,” he told HipHopDX. “I text Durk like, ‘Yo, call your next album Drillmatic.’ And he was like, ‘Yo, that’s fire.’ And then two years passed and he didn’t call nothing Drillmatic so I was like, ‘I’ma reel that back in.’”

At the top of this year, The Game said he linked up with producer Hit-Boy and they began working on songs. “I pulled up to his studio, we did three songs that day, three songs the next day, three songs the next day and we had nine,” he recalled. Coincidentally, Nas was also working with Hit around the same time. The “How We Do” rapper said he spoke with Nas about his tentative album title.

“I ran the title by him and he blessed it, and so then I ran with it. Because I don’t want to step on no toes, especially not with people I look up to. So yeah, we got Nas’ blessing, we started to run it and then it took on a life of its own and now we’re here,” he continued. The Game said his album is somewhat a merger of trending drill music and arguably the best rap album ever, Illmatic.

“We’re about to put out the best rap album in, I don’t know how many years,” he lamented. “I don’t care who got an album coming out, I don’t care who dropped — nothing’s gonna be better than this album.… I put my whole heart, my soul, my mind, everything that I am, I put into this album.”

He went on to declare that the amount of work he put into Drillmatic far outweighs his efforts of past albums such as The Documentary and The Doctor’s Advocate. “Drillmatic will not disappoint at all, not a soul,” he declared. “And if it does, then you just lying. You should stop listening to my shit, go look in the mirror and have a talk with yourself about your appreciation of real rap music.”

The album was initially slated to be released in mid June, but was pushed back to July 1. It is now slated for a release later this month.