In 2006 the Clipse released a stellar album entitled Hell Hath No Fury, but it was the last track on the album that proved to be the strongest.
Aptly named ‘Nightmares’ the song consists of the brothers from Virginia delving deep into their minds to relay their respective takes on the dope dealing life that served as a backdrop for their then budding rap careers.
With a title like ‘Nightmares’ you don’t have to listen to the track (although you should because it’s really dope and the vocals from Bilal and Pharrell add to its eeriness) to know its dark and deeply rooted lyrics serve as Pusha T and Malice’s testimony to the other side of the street life; a side that includes paranoia and repentance.
“There were things that touched my soul in such a way, even though I was enjoying the spoils, even though I truly enjoyed the spoils, there were things that didn’t sit right with my soul,” said No Malice (he changed his name in 2012 and became a Christian rapper, fearing he sinned too much during his heyday in the streets) in a November 2016 interview with GQ.
“I can even see how it had led me to where I am today. I’m speaking for me personally, I didn’t set out for it to be regretful, but I was dealing with regrets, I was dealing with remorse…there was a lot of pain in dealing with that album.”
The theme on ‘Nightmares’ would serve as a theme for the album as a whole, and No Malice’s sentiment is shared with the G.O.O.D. Music president.
“It wasn’t fun,” said Pusha in the GQ interview. “I probably could have given you an album with straight facts, the shit probably didn’t even need to rhyme, and it would have been the most shocking shit you’ve ever heard.”
The thoroughness the duo displayed on the record played a major role in why the album is looked back on so fondly by hip-hop heads, for it allowed the brothers to show their vulnerability as humans in a genre of music dominated by braggadocio.
“We talked about exactly how we lived. Nothing was fabricated,” said No Malice. “You got a realism that was rare. You can fact check everything, and we come up clean.”
His brother in arms backs that claim up stating, “I meant every fucking word on that album. I really fucking did.”
A great article written by Alex Wong, it’s well worth the read. The full piece revisits ‘Hell Hath No Fury’ on its ten year anniversary, discusses the group’s issue with their label at the time (which delayed the project numerous times until a lawsuit settled things) and the brothers offer their opinions on whether or not a future Clipse album is possible, among other topics.
The full interview can be read on GQ’s website.