After dropping Good vs. Evil in 2016, KXNG Crooked is now gearing up for the sequel, Good vs. Evil II: The Red Empire, which releases on Friday (Dec. 8). Before the project’s official release date, XXL has the audio premiere a day early.
With a cover that features President Donald Trump kneeling before Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Osama bin Laden, Jesus Christ and more, it’s clear Crooked is taking a political approach on his new project.
“When I first started creating Good vs. Evil, I wondered how I would get my audience to listen to a project covering social injustice, racism, classism etc. in a climate where most rappers are making music about poppin’ Xanax and drinking lean,” Crooked said of the LP.
“My immediate afterthought was who gives a fuck what other artists are doing, hip-hop needs this album!” he added. “Look at the world today. We have a president whose ex-wife is on record saying she was raped by him. We have police officers who are on film killing unarmed citizens with no consequences. We have entire cities like Flint, Mich. drinking poisonous water. Good vs. Evil II is just as necessary as part one. From the production to the content to the music sequencing to the artwork everything is designed to provoke thought. And the shit slaps too!”
While the new album isn’t heavy on features, it does include appearances from Jai, Jay Townsed, Emanny, Styles P and fellow Slaughterhouse member Royce 5’9″. Production on the project is handled by Lavish, Snaz, C-Wash, Audio Jones and more.
The Long Beach, Calif. rapper also commented on the sure-to-be controversial cover, saying there were a few messages he wanted to get across. “There are a few messages I wanted the artwork to communicate” Crooked asserted.
“Sometimes there’s light in villains and darkness in heroes,” he said. “I also added a figure that may be a bit controversial and that’s the widely accepted image of Jesus Christ. No shot at Christians, but that particular image of Christ symbolizes death, slavery and colonization to many.
Crooked continued, “Most American slave masters and the Klu Klux Klan members hang that image on their walls and truly believe themselves to be Christians. I’m trying to open doors to taboo conversations. And lastly, the Trump figure is ‘Red Hood,’ the album’s new enemy of justice being inducted into the Tyrant’s club and kneeling like the football players for what he believes in; hatred and division.”
Listen to Good vs. Evil II and check out the tracklist below. You can also pre-order the album here.