The Ecstatic is the fourth album by American rapper Mos Def. It was released on June 9, 2009, by Downtown Records.
After venturing further away from hip hop with an acting career and two poorly received albums, Mos Def signed a recording contract with Downtown and recorded The Ecstatic primarily at the Record Plant in Los Angeles. He worked with producers such as Preservation, Mr. Flash, Oh No, and Madlib, the latter two of whom reused instrumentals they had produced on Stones Throw Records. Singer Georgia Anne Muldrow, formerly of the record label, was one of the album's few guest vocalists, along with rappers Slick Rick and Talib Kweli. For its front cover, a still from Charles Burnett's 1978 film Killer of Sheep was reproduced in red tint.
The album has been described by music journalists as a conscious and alternative hip hop record with an eccentric, internationalist quality. Mos Def's raps about global politics, love, spirituality, and social conditions are informed by the zeitgeist of the late 2000s, Black internalionalism, and Pan-Islamic ideas, incorporating a number of Islamic references throughout the album. Its loosely structured, lightly reverbed songs use unconventional time signatures and samples taken from a variety of international musical styles, including Afrobeat, soul, Eurodance, jazz, reggae, Latin, and Middle Eastern music. Mos Def titled The Ecstatic after one of his favorite novels, the 2002 Victor LaValle book, believing its titular phrase evoked his singular creative vision for the album.
The Ecstatic charted at number nine on the Billboard 200 in its first week of release and eventually sold 168,000 copies. Its sales benefited from its presence on Internet blogs and the release of a T-shirt illustrating the record's packaging alongside a label printed with a code redeemable for a free download of the album. A widespread critical success, The Ecstatic was viewed as a return to form for Mos Def and one of the year's best albums. He embarked on an international tour to support the record, performing concerts in North America, Japan, Australia, and the United Kingdom between September and April 2010. As his DJ on the tour, Preservation began to develop remixes of the album's songs, which he later released on the remix album The REcstatic in 2013.
Label: Downtown Music B0027000-01
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Reissue
Genre: Hip Hop
A2 Twilite Speedball
B2 Quiet Dog Bite Hard
B3 Life In Marvelous Times
B4 The Embassy
C1 No Hay Nada Mas
C3 Pretty Dancer
C4 Workers Comp.
D4 Casa Bey