Canadian rapper k-os returned with his first new song in three years on Friday, a breezy, tongue-in-cheek single titled “No Bucks.”
k-os released albums at a steady clip between 2002 and 2015, earning a pair of platinum certifications in Canada and a Grammy nomination Stateside for Best Dance Recording. But after putting out Can’t Fly Without Gravity, he took a hiatus to focus on what he described only as “real life.”
He appears energized by his time off. “No Bucks” is at once goofy — “I don’t give any bucks about it,” k-os sings — and ready for a brawl: “I’m back in the building/ Killing fake rappers leaving egos on the ceiling.” The beat behind the MC splits the difference between jaunty, whistling guitar pop and classic boom bap hip-hop.
In a statement, k-os said his time away from music led him to an epiphany. “The naiveté of every generation is that their arts and culture is going to last forever,” he wrote. “That just seems like the hubris of youth. However, one day when I was listening to a Fleetwood Mac record on the radio it dawned upon me that even though all great music ages well and keeps replenishing itself, there’s really no foolproof way to know for sure if what you write today will be a classic tomorrow.”
To some artists, that might be a terrifying realization. But for k-os, it was liberating. “That’s when I started to give ‘no bucks,'” he wrote. “No investment into the fashionista changing tide of music. I don’t care.”
The rapper is currently working on an EP that he hopes to release later this fall.