Fivio Foreign’s “City of Gods” helped kickstart the rollout for his upcoming debut album B.I.B.L.E. (out April 8), complete with a “feature of the year” verse from Kanye West and an emphatic chorus from Alicia Keys that her evoked her and JAY-Z‘s “Empire State of Mind” anthem.
Now, “City of Gods” has received a sequel courtesy of the Songs In A Minor songstress, except this time she’s flying solo.
“City of Gods (Part II)” retains the basic skeleton of Fivio Foreign’s original, including the same chorus and bridge. But overall it’s a more poignant, stripped-down affair that allows Alicia Keys’ soaring vocals to ring out across the five boroughs.
“City of gods, city of dreams/City where nothing is ever what it seems/They’ll never take it all away from me/’Cause I see nothing but infinity,” she serenades. “And I, I will love, I will love you wherever you are/I’ve been wishing, wishing on every star.”
On the production side, this new version strips away the pounding drums and whirring synths of the original for a piano-led rendition, although it does retain some of its New York drill rap flavor thanks to its muscular bassline.
“City of Gods (Part II)” comes complete with a glossy music video boasting a cameo from New York-via-London rap legend Slick Rick. The Sylvia Zachary and Sing Lee-directed clip finds Alicia Keys rocking diamond grills and several oversized chains, placed around her neck by The Ruler himself.
Elsewhere, Keys speeds past a nighttime backdrop of New York City in a Mercedes-Benz EQ Silver Arrow concept car. The 41-year-old singer was named a global partner for the German luxury car company last April.
“This comes from my heart,” she wrote on Instagram of the song. “For my city, for HERstory, for @fivioforeign_8fs, for @kanyewest, and the INCREDIBLE and unforgettable moment I was able to experience with @therulernyc.” She added, What an unbelievably special moment and song. Sending you so much love.”
It’s unclear if “City of Gods (Part II)” is intended for a new Alicia Keys album or simply a one-off release. Her last album, Keys, arrived in December 2021 with appearances from Lil Wayne, Pusha T, Swae Lee and more.