The performance was staged in a large warehouse space and began with Mensa and Jean performing “Shelter” while they and a group of men wearing prison uniforms and hoods lay on the ground. Over the course of the performance, the men slowly sat up, and when Mensa switched over to the fiery “Fr33dom” everyone had risen and coalesced into a euphoric mosh pit. The performance also featured a poem written and recited by Julius Jones, an inmate on death row, despite there being evidence suggesting his innocence.
Mensa released “Shelter” earlier in February, and the studio version of the track also features a verse from Chance the Rapper. The performance of “Fr33dom” on The Late Show marked the song’s premiere.
Both “Shelter” and “Fr33dom” will appear on Mensa’s next project, I Tape, a five-song EP set to arrive March 26th. I Tape will feature production from Just Blaze and Smoko Ono, while CottonTale provided the orchestration. The EP will follow Mensa’s summer 2020 release, V Tape.