Published Jun 04, 2010Back in February, long-running indie hip-hop imprint Definitive Jux announced that it would be going on a lengthy hiatus as it weathers the terrible state of the record industry. In a statement, label head El-P revealed that the imprint would refrain from releasing new music after it dropped a few more albums. Among them was King of Hearts, the long-lost full-length from the late Camu Tao.
Tao was a beloved Def Jux rapper and producer who collaborated with everyone from RJD2 to his groups the Nighthawks, S.A. Smash and MHz. In 2008, Tao lost a two-year battle with lung cancer and passed away at the age of 31. At the time, he was hard at work on his debut album King of Hearts. Originally slated for release in late 2009, the album's release has been confirmed for this summer.
In a press release, El-P described the album, saying, "In many ways King of Hearts is a record of what could have been, a snapshot of an artist mid-evolution. In some ways it's a diary discovered in the belongings of a friend who passed away. Or maybe it's a scrap book of a master inventor with only half of the schematics of some incredible new invention detailed inside. You don't need to see the invention fully realized in order to recognize the magnitude of the creative force behind the sketches."
The press release continues with a quote from Kid Cudi, who says, "These songs are so before their time it's ridiculous. The melodies and harmonies are very clever, the lyrics are quick witted and his vocal arrangements are genius. People need to hear this shit and know this man's story. Camu was a great future Ohio talent who I'm sure would have made a huge mark in this mediocre industry."
King of Hearts will be released on August 17. It will be issued as a co-release between Definitive Jux and Fat Possum.