Vince Staples Drops New Song "Shame on the Devil," Announces Final Def Jam Release 'Dark Times'

A decade removed from his first Def Jam release, Staples says he's found "clarity."

Video via Vince Staples

View this video on YouTube

Video via Vince Staples

Vince Staples is entering a new era with his upcoming Dark Times album, out Friday.

The first single from the new album, "Shame on the Devil," sees Staples launching his latest with an opening wish for "loving and affection." From there, Staples reflects on issues "with my closest of friends" and later asserts that he’s "touched by an angel" in the chorus. Saint Mino, Tyler Page, Joe Harrison, and Michael Uzowuru are credited with production on the track, available in full here.

As Staples pointed out in an Instagram update announcing the album, Dark Times will mark his final release with Def Jam.

album cover featuring a textured dark background with the album title subtly visible

"11 years ago, a young, uncertain version of myself was given an opportunity with Def Jam Recordings," Staples told fans on Sunday. "I released my first project under their banner, Shyne Coldchain Vol 2, a year later. I was unsure of what to expect from the world of music but deeply aware of what I needed: a change in my surroundings and a clear understanding of self. Ten years and seven projects later, I’ve found that clarity."

Per press notes, Staples’ new album was recorded over a period of seven months in North Hollywood. Staples said the album, his first since 2022’s Ramona Park Broke My Heart, which Complex named the fifth best album of its release year, stands as a "personal achievement." Furthermore, Staples added, Dark Times sees him "mastering some things I’ve tried before that I wasn’t great at in the beginning," thus also serving as a "testament to musical growth, song structure—all the good stuff."

Dark Times is preceded by the truly excellent The Vince Staples Show, which launched on Netflix back in February. Speaking with Karla Rodriguez for Complex earlier this year, Staples noted that the series' journey from idea to execution spanned nearly 10 years thanks to the "extremely cumbersome" process of the TV medium.

"So it's really a bunch of restarts," Staples said at the time. "It requires a lot of patience and a lot of commitment, for lack of a better word. So just seeing that it came to fruition, I'm extremely grateful, especially for the people around me."

If for some inconceivable reason you haven't gifted yourself with a front-to-back watch of The Vince Staples Show, there's no better time than now. Get to it.

Latest in Music