In typical mogul fashion, Jay Z has made the game his, again. He has overstepped the boundaries, he has disregarded the rules, and he has even changed the way a platinum record is sold. From standing on the corners boppin’, to epitomizing the American Dream, Jay Z has reminded the masses that the rap game is his, and that certainly isn’t changing soon. Hov, in all twelve of his studio efforts over his long, illustrious career have reached either gold, platinum or multi-platinum certification. Magna Carta Holy Grail is no exception, and it was released this morning. In a brand partnership with Samsung, the “business, man” has already sold a million copies of MCHG redefining music brand marketing, and furthering his domination of the entertainment industry as a whole.
Upon first hearing Funkmaster Flex stream the album last night on Hot 97, instantly, the hair on the back of my neck stood stiff as I eagerly devoured each track. New stylistic moves stood out to me, and lots of the things Rick Rubin and Timbaland were shown nodding their heads about in the televised announcement from a few weeks back, began to come to life. In a departure from Hov’s norm, his guest artists get a lot of time on the album, which certainly isn’t a bad thing. The title track, Holy Grail, featuring Justin Timberlake is raw, sexy, and fresh. BBC, featuring Nas, Beyonce, Swizz Beatz, Pharrell, Timbaland and Justin Timberlake has an impeccably funky groove, giving the track an irresistible vibe. Picasso Baby has a swagger to it, reminiscent of tracks like D.O.A. and Success. Each track dons its own unique personality, yet all are saturated in that iconic Jay Z bravado.
Overall, the album is a blend of styles and motifs, all melded together perfectly with Jay Z as the catalyst for an amazing collective effort. It has a little bit of everything for everyone. Justin Timberlake’s rhythm and blues crooning, teeth-grinding-hard verses by Rick Ross, Queen Beyonce’s fierce yet sensual voice like semi-sweet chocolate melting on your tongue, and there aren’t too many things better than a spit from Nasty Nas, all of which are found on MCHG, as it delivers an eclectic blend of rap music to the masses. In summation, I find it so apropos that not too long ago Nas rapped that, “hip hop is dead”, because now it is becoming increasingly clear that Jay Z is bringing it back to life.
So enjoy the 4th of July, and crack a cold one to America, and maybe even another one to Mr. Carter. Check out the full album streams while they last!
Here is an alternative stream for mobile users:
Jay-Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail track list:
1. “Holy Grail” (feat. Justin Timberlake)
2. “Picasso Baby”
3. “Tom Ford”
4. “FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt” (feat. Rick Ross)
5. “Oceans” (feat. Frank Ocean)
7. “Somewhere in America”
11. “Part II (on the Run)” (feat. Beyonce)
12. “Beach Is Better”
13. “BBC” (feat. Nas, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, Swizz Beatz, Pharrell & Timbaland)
14. “Jay-Z Blue”
15. “La Familia”
16. “Nickels and Dimes”