Although “Hot Thing” might not have stirred the masses to the tune of previous hits like “Get By” or “Move Something,” 2007 saw Talib Kweli with his highest charting debut of his career with Eardrum. Nearly five months after the album’s release, Kweli told HipHopDX that he’s still working the effort, having recently shot a video for his next single, the Just Blaze-produced “Hostile Gospel,” in Nigeria. Of the project, Kweli said, “There were some really great things we learned about this project, and some not-so-great things. Overall, I’m optimistic. This was kind of our proving-ground as a company.

Talib also confirmed his release schedule for the upcoming year, with his Warner Brothers-distributed Blacksmith imprint. “We’ve got Jean Grae‘s Jeanius coming, which is not a mixtape, it’s album,” said the Brooklyn emcee of his next project. Jean, like Crooked I and Tonedeff, also has plans for a Valentine’s Day-themed mixtape releasing in two weeks. “We’re finishing up that, then I’m really exciting to release this project by Strong Arm Steady.” The second project from trio Krondon, Phil Da Agony and Mitchy Slick will mark Blacksmith‘s first west coast release, as well as the major label debut for the first two artists of the group.

Lastly, Talib Kweli confirmed that he’s closing out the year with a reunion with Hi-Tek. “People asked for it, so we got back together, and we’re working on that.” Albeit sparse on details, Kweli promised the project to be released before the close of 2008, and revealed that recording was underway.