We reported 10 days ago that the Roots will release their follow-up to last year’s How I Got Over on Dec. 6 via Def Jam. And now, we’re learning that the album, Undun, will feature 10 tracks from the Philadelphia-based hip-hop outfit. Also, they’ll be dropping their first single, the Big K.R.I.T.-assisted “Make My,” on Nov. 1.
Along with the track listing, the Roots’ Questlove revealed exactly what makes this record the band’s first concept album. According to the drummer/producer, the project depicts the life of Redford Stevens, a man who died at the age of 25 in 1999. You can read Questo’s full breakdown of the record and view the track listing below.
“At this point in our career we’d like for our work to have a unifying theme, and an experiential quality,” says Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson, 40. “We’ve been intentionally making our albums shorter in length so that they can be experienced as a continuous work. The music is band-oriented with an eye on the moody cinematic. As a DJ, I am the King of playlists, but I don’t want our albums to feel like a playlist or a mixtape for that matter. We want to tell stories that work within the album format and we want the stories to be nuanced and useful to people. undun is the story of this kid who becomes criminal, but he wasn’t born criminal. He’s not the nouveau exotic primitive bug-eyed gunrunner like Tupac’s character Bishop in Juice… he’s actually thoughtful and is neither victim nor hero. Just some kid who begins to order his world in a way that makes the most sense to him at a given moment… At the end of the day… isn’t that what we all do?”
The Roots’ Undun track listing:
- Make My
- One Time
- Kool On
- The Jump
- I Remember
- Tip The Scale