Raheem DeVaughn Shines on The Roots' New Song, "Tomorrow"

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
April 27 2014 11:48 AM

The Roots Embrace the Present on Their New Song, "Tomorrow"

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Raheem DeVaughn stars on The Roots' latest track.

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Despite a career that has now stretched over 20 years, The Roots never get old; their blend of intellectual lyricism and eclectic instrumentation is just as vital now as it was in the early 90s. It also sounds just as good: "Tomorrow," the second track to be released off the group's eleventh and forthcoming album, ...And Then You Shoot Your Cousin, is a soulful jaunt that's sure to please. The tune employs some crisp ragtime piano chords, a spare beat, and a warm croon from guest singer Raheem DeVaughn.

The first single off the new album, "When the People Cheer," was more in line with the group's socially conscious, often activist themes: it declaimed hip-hop misogyny and consumerism, couching a satiric commentary in a scathing first-person narrative. "Tomorrow," on the other hand, serves a simpler purpose, functioning as a light-hearted plea to enjoy the moment and embrace the present.

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The song is a nice counterpoint to the group's weightier conceptual ambitions, which often include resolving  hip-hop's faults with its original mission. And Then You Shoot Your Cousin will be released May 13 via Def Jam.

Sharan Shetty is a writer for Brow Beat. You can follow him on Twitter