Considering Mac Miller’s close connection with both ScHoolboy Q and Ab-Soul, it’s surprising it’s taken this long for a proper collaboration between Mac and TDE’s pride and joy, Kendrick Lamar. While K-Dot did appear on Mac’s 2012 mixtape Macadelic, until recently the two had not collaborated on a proper full-length album.
With “God Is Fair, Sexy Nasty” off Mac’s new album The Divine Feminine, that collaborative experience has finally been achieved—with some surprising results. Considering the unforeseeable and expansive artistic evolution both artists have undergone, anticipation for this collaboration was justifiably high, and whether or not anyone said it outright, with these two names involved there was an expectation for how the song would sound.
Kendrick’s recent hot streak of absolutely fire guest features—like on “Goosebumps” with Travis Scott and “Wat’s Wrong” with Isaiah Rashad—and Mac’s recent adoption of more varied musical influences theoretically provided the perfect landscape for a possible feature-of-the-year verse from Cornrow Kenny, but the pairing had other ideas.
Mac recently explained the process to Zane Lowe on Apple Music’s Beats 1 Radio:
It feels like a moment. We were in the studio together. Like, we created something, which is my favorite thing because all these artists have their own creative minds and planets that they work on, and you gotta create something new together for me. I don’t want to go do a song with Kendrick and then go make a Kendrick song.
And make a “Kendrick song” they did not. “God Is Fair, Sexy Nasty” features Lamar in a brilliantly understated and supplementary fashion, providing soul and flare throughout the track sparsely and appropriately, rather than a possibly moment-stealing 16 bars.
While Mac is afforded the majority of the lyrical shine on the track, you can feel Kendrick’s contributions run deeper than just a well-placed half-hook or a layered punchline. The song further showcases Kendrick’s versatility as an artist and a surprising similarity between the current sonic leanings of both stars.
The non-existence of a spastic, jazzy verse from Kendrick might disappoint some rap fans, but “God Is Fair, Sexy Nasty” is actually a fantastic collaboration between two artists who are more interested in crafting a memorable and original experience than headline-worthy punchlines.
Here’s to hoping there’s plenty more where this came from.