Playing into the time-bending elements of “Tenet,” “The Plan” also stays true to Scott’s signature sound. Beginning with an earth-shaking bass loop that forms the foundation for the rest of the beat, the chorus soon interrupts its ominous tone. “You don’t know where we stand / It’s true / Know the plan,” Scott sings in heavy autotune. In his verses, Scott performs a fast-paced yet melodic flow reminiscent of “808s & Heartbreak”-era Kanye West, peppering in the occasional “yeah” and “ooh” ad-libs.
Though the track’s production — by “Tenet” composer Ludwig Göransson and Jay-Z collaborator WondaGurl — is enough to deliver the feeling of being suspended in time and space, Scott also makes several references to Nolan’s film within the lyrics. Most notably, he compares the effects of the drug whippets to going back in time: “Last time I did the whippets, last time I live reverse / Pull up ’round, hit the reverend, last time I hit your crib / Last time there was no tenants.” In another lyric, Scott references a Boeing jet, which Nolan actually purchased and blew up for a scene in the film.
When asked about Scott’s contribution to the film’s soundtrack in a GQ article, Nolan had nothing but praise for the rapper.
“His voice became the final piece of a yearlong puzzle,” Nolan said. “His insights into the musical and narrative mechanism Ludwig Göransson and I were building were immediate, insightful and profound.”
Scott gave compliments to “Tenet,” without giving much away of the mysterious film.
“I can’t even explain it,” Scott told GQ. “You literally just have to watch it. It’s very fire.”
But Scott’s collaboration with Nolan isn’t just about music — in true Scott fashion, he marked the release of “The Plan” with a Cactus Jack “Tenet” t-shirt that is available for 24 hours only. Though Scott is no stranger to the world of merch, the time limit put on this drop gives it a special “Tenet” twist.
To celebrate the release, Scott also posted a photo of himself and Nolan along with a clip of the song’s visualizer featuring scenes from the film. “Tenet” is set to debut internationally on Aug. 26 and in the U.S. on Sept. 3.
See the photo and listen to “The Plan” below.