Nav has shared the first single from his new album, Demons Protected by Angels. The trappy new track, ‘Never Sleep’, features an all-star line-up with Lil Baby and Travis Scott collaborations and production helmed by Tay Keith, Grayson and Mike Dean.
Opting for the elusive, the press release gives very little away with regards to the upcoming release of Demons Protected by Angels, simply stating that it will be “coming soon”. The new album will mark Nav’s first solo album since 2020’s spring release, Good Intentions.
The new single comes in with a high tempo beat, and a fittingly hurried delivery as the rappers sing of drugs, extortion, decadence and distrust. The stream of consciousness verse is certainly not the best work we’ve heard from the three highly revered lyricists, but the disjointed statements build a vivid mosaic of street life that meets the well-produced music perfectly.
For ‘Never Sleep’, Nav reunited with longtime collaborator Travis Scott. The pair previously worked together on ‘Champion’, ‘Beibs in the Trap’, ‘Yosemite’, and ‘Turks’. Additionally, the Toronto rapper and record producer has worked with Lil Baby on ‘Off White Vlone’ and ‘Don’t Need friends’.
In a highly revealing interview with Pitchfork in 2019, Nav opened up about dealing with shyness throughout his early life and career. “I remember hiding behind my mom at parent-teacher conferences,” he said.
He also candidly reflected on his 2018 release, Reckless. “It quickly settled in that I didn’t release that good of an album. (…) One hater comment is cool, but they were piling up from my fans, I had to take a couple of steps back and humble myself.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Nav seemed to acknowledge his insecurities. “I get it. You see an iced-out brown guy talking shit who wants to be a rapper,” he said. “In the beginning, it bothered me, but lately, it doesn’t. Nobody is gonna say that to my face. It’s online from somebody with 10 Instagram followers, on private, with a dog picture display—they don’t matter.”
With 2020’s Good Intentions, Nav showed composure and rose above his social media tormentors with his most confident and insightful release to date. It’s hoped that Demons Protected from Angels will continue this more assertive force in the rap world.
Listen to ‘Never Sleep’ below.