Lauryn Hill is out of jail today. After serving three months for failing to file tax returns (on over $2 million worth of income), she emerges complete with a new single: a rap-heavy, statement-strong track called “Consumerism.” (She played a Williamsburg show back in May, right before her incarceration, which received mixed reviews.) This new single might just be off an upcoming album — in April she signed a deal with Sony to work on new music, and then released the song “Neurotic Society” soon after. Alongside the new song, Hill released this statement:
Consumerism is part of some material I was trying to finish before I had to come in. We did our best to eek out a mix via verbal and emailed direction, thanks to the crew of surrogate ears on the other side. Letters From Exile is material written from a certain space, in a certain place. I felt the need to discuss the underlying socio-political, cultural paradigm as I saw it. I haven’t been able to watch the news too much recently, so I’m not hip on everything going on. But inspiration of this sort is a kind of news in and of itself, and often times contains an urgency that precedes what happens. I couldn’t imagine it not being relevant. Messages like these I imagine find their audience, or their audience finds them, like water seeking it’s level.
And here’s the track: