Concert preview: Talib Kweli at Ace of Cups

Joel Oliphint

On Jan. 31, rapper Talib Kweli posted an Instagram photo of Kanye West scribbling some notes while seated at a table next to Yasiin Bey (formerly Mos Def) and Dave Chapelle. “2018 is looking good,” Kweli wrote, but he provided no further details.

Then on Saturday, Feb. 10, Bey made a surprise appearance at a Madlib DJ set in Denver and said he and Kweli, his collaborator in legendary rap group Black Star, are looking to release a new, Madlib-produced Black Star album in 2018. This year also happens to mark the 20th anniversary of Black Star's one and only album, the critically reveredMos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star.

Meanwhile, Kweli is in the midst of a solo tour, including a sold-out Ace of Cups show, which comes on the heels of his eighth album,Radio Silence. The release finds the lyrically dexterous, politically active, socially conscious rapper as fired up as ever, but the Brooklyn-raised MC also makes room for more sentimental songs like “The One I Love,” featuring BJ the Chicago Kid and Sampha, on which he repeatedly professes love for his one and only: “I try to curb my habit of acting like other rappers do/Them other chicks ships in the night, they just passing through.”

Ace of Cups

8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 15

2619 N. High St., Old North

ALSO PLAYING: Niko IS, DJ Spintelect