Public Enemy is back with a vengeance. Shortly after announcing their return to Def Jam Recordings — the label where it all began — Chuck D, Flavor Flav and DJ Lord have returned with the tracklist for their forthcoming album What You Gonna Do When The Grid Goes Down?.
Boasting 17 tracks, the upcoming project features a wide array of guests, including a couple who once called Def Jam family.
On the track “Public Enemy Number Won,” Chuck and Flav reunite the surviving Beastie Boys Mike D and Ad-Rock with Run-DMC who were all affiliated with the iconic imprint at one point. Beastie Boys’ first Hip Hop album Licensed To Ill was released by Def Jam in 1986, while Run-DMC was managed by Def Jam co-founders Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin.
Then of course, Public Enemy’s seminal debut Yo! Bum Rush The Show arrived on Def Jam in 1987. The revolutionary group would release their most prolific work with the label, including It Takes A Nation of Millions To Hold Us Back (1988) and Fear Of A Black Planet (1990).
Meanwhile, the song “Smash The Crowd” featuring Ice-T and PMD brings PMD full circle. His group EPMD released their third studio album Business As Usual with the label in 1990. They would release four more albums under the Def Jam name: Business Never Personal (1992), Back in Business (1997) and Out of Business (1999).
Other special guests on the forthcoming album include the chief architect of funk George Clinton, DJ Premier, Cypress Hill and Pop Diesel as well as Nas, Rapsody, Black Thought, Enemy Radio’s Jahi, YG and Questlove who all appeared with Chuck, Flav and Lord on the explosive 2020 BET Awards opener “Fight The Power (Remix).”
What You Gonna Do When The Grid Goes Down? is expected to arrive via Def Jam on September 25. Until then, check out the tracklist and cover art below.
- When The Grid Goes Down f. George Clinton
- Grid f. Cypress Hill and George Clinton
- State of the Union (STFU) f. DJ Premier
- Merica Mirror f. Pop Diesel
- Public Enemy Number Won f. Mike D, Ad-Rock, Run-DMC
- Yesterday Man f. Daddy-O
- Crossroads Burning (Interlude) f. James Bomb
- Fight The Power: Remix 2020 f. Nas, Rapsody, Black Thought, Jahi, YG, Questlove
- Beat Them All
- Smash The Crowd f. Ice-T, PMD
- If You Can’t Join Em Beat Em
- Go At It f. Jahi
- Don’t Look At The Sky” (Interlude) f. Mark Jenkins
- Rest In Beats f. The Impossebulls
- R.I.P. Blackat
- Closing: I Am Black f. Ms. Ariel