The sonic rewards were plentiful on Friday thanks to the release of the long-awaited new album from Pusha-T, It’s Almost Dry.

The album, Push’s first since 2018’s revered DAYTONA, opens with a song previously teased as being a “very personal record.” Taking its name from a street in Norfolk where Push’s mother worked as a pharmacy technician, “Brambleton” counts Pharrell Williams as its sole producer.

Speaking with Charlamagne tha God ahead of the Dry release, King Push was asked to reveal what made him “feel free” to tell the story at the heart of the track.

“I was hurt. I was hurt watching that,” he said, referencing a DJ Vlad-shared interview with former Clipse manager Anthony “Geezy” Gonzalez. “Like, I was hurt for a couple different reasons. I was hurt because I’m looking at somebody that I admired, you know, have, like, their name written across they hat…their at-name or whatever written across their hat. And I knew at that point like, ‘Oh, man. I don’t know who this person is no more because that’s not what we from.’ Then I was hurt because I felt like, you know, I know him very well and I know that he’s not a good speaker, he’s not a good talker, and he knows that about himself and I personally think that he didn’t even mean to put it the way that he did.”

Perhaps the most direct commentary on “Brambleton” comes in the third verse, with Push specifically mentioning “Vlad interviews” before referencing Fredo’s betrayal in The Godfather II as a point of comparison:

“It was sad watching dude in Vlad interviews
Really it’s ’bout me, he channeled it through you 
Had a million answers, didn’t have a clue
Why Michael kissed Fredo in Godfather II

The third verse closes with a line tying it all back to a reflection included in the song’s opening seconds, namely memories of being “on Brambleton when Pooh got hit.” The chorus, too, sees Push giving lyrical time to “the past” but from a forward-thinking perspective:

“Why would I wanna hold you down?
When I know you now, the past is your go-to now
Shit, we really used to roll around
Coppin’ quarter-pounds from the border towns and shit
Ferraris gettin’ ordered now
Can’t water down, Godfathers to you daughters now
Shit, but let me bring it all around 
Roles are different now
N***as need to tone it down”

Elsewhere, Push makes mention of the ledge scene in Ernest R. Dickerson’s 1992 drama Juice, starring Omar Epps and 2Pac, and laments a person whose face is “all across the news outlets.” Hear the full song below.

A key element of Geezy’s Vlad discussions was the 2013 My Name Is My Name cut “S.N.I.T.C.H.,” also produced by Pharrell.

Further addressing the memories tied into the title of the Dry song in question, Pusha-T revealed to Charlamagne this month he still drives through the area “all the time” when taking the scenic route.

“[My mother] grew up across the street in a place called Youngs Park. … It meant a lot,” he said at the time.

For the full It’s Almost Dry experience, click here. In Pusha-T’s own words, the album was made “entirely with the greatest producers of all time,” i.e. Pharrell and Ye.