Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch The Throne [Review]

15 number one albums. 27 Grammy wins. Countless trends started. Major festivals headlined. Millions of albums sold. Hip-Hop’s two biggest stars, Kanye West & Jay-Z, connected together not only set out to make Watch The Throne a great album but a great event.

No early leaks. Epic anticipation. Countless debates and predictions. The album is finally here.

Now exhale. Let’s get into the review.

1. No Church In The Wild
Featuring Frank Ocean; Produced by Kanye West, & 88-Keys
As soon as the beat starts I see opening credits and an well edited montage; this feels like a movie. Frank Ocean delivers a nice chorus that goes well with Jay-Z’s “drug dealer chic” & Kanye’s lines about sniffing cocaine lines off a chick’s black skin. Both rappers sound great over the bass heavy beat (A good look for 88-Keys) and besides foreseeing the illuminati conspiracy theorists having a field day with the lyrics, “No Church In the Wild” is a appropriate opener. I was gonna diss the fact that Yeezy pulled out the Auto-Tunes for the bridge so earlier in the album, but it actually fits the songs (Plus, it’s actually The-Dream singing that part).

2. Lift Off
Featuring Beyoncé; Produced by Kanye West, Jeff Bhasker, Mike Dean, Q-Tip, & Don Jazzy
Whoa, this is a drastic change in feeling from the previous track. But then again, if they was looking for a radio worthy single, this is it. The track has a pop feel but it’s still well produced (Though towards the end, it has a break down that not poppy at all).

The actual rap verses are surprisingly short here; about 8 bars. I really didn’t like the flow of either Ye & Jay on this song. They weren’t bad verses in terms of lyrics though, just the way they were rapped.

To be honest, the real star here is probably Beyonce as she got the most screen time. Thank god Bruno Mars wasn’t included on this track as previously rumored (Besides, he was already on another album this year by a high-profile Hip-Hop duo).

3. Niggas In Paris
Produced by Hit-Boy, Kanye West, Mike Dean, & Anthony Kilhoffer
After a Will Ferrell snippet from Blades Of Glory, we are introduce to an energetic bouncy track. And I can’t stop bouncing in my chair. “That shit cray” (Get used to that term for the next few weeks).

Be clear: Between Jigga bragging about being okay with The Nets going 0-82 and Kanye telling a broad the get on her knees in the bathroom stall, this track is a perfect example of “sophisticate ignorance” Kanye spoke off on “Otis”. You know that cousin you have that only listens to Waka Flocka Flame, this is gonna be his favorite track off Watch The Throne. But the funny thing is, it’s so infectious, you’ll like it too.

4. Otis
Featuring Otis Redding; Produced by Kanye West
You’ve heard this track by now. On the back of an Otis Redding sample, “Otis” was the re-announcing of Watch The Throne. We had already heard “H*A*M” & “That’s My Bitch”, but this was the one that made everybody know that the album was really coming.

While most people’s feelings were split on this track, I thought the simple loop with Jay & Yeezy going back forth did what it was suppose to. Plus, hearing it beside all the rest of the tracks on the album makes you understand how well it fits. Most will probably skip it though since the instrumental has been molested by a million rappers at this points, but it’s still a nice track.

5. Gotta Have It
Produced by The Neptunes & Kanye West
It’s songs like these that show that Kanye & Jay-Z recorded these songs in person. The back and forth between Janye here sounds effortless:

~Kanye West (Jay-Z)~
Hello, hello, hello, white America, assassinate my character
Money matrimony, yeah they tryna break the marriage up
Who gon’ act phony, or who gone try to embarrass ya
I’mma need a day off, I think I call Ferris up
(Bueller had a Muller but I switched it for a Miele
Cause I’m richer and prior to this shit was moving free base)
Had a conference with the DJs, Puerto Rico three days
(Poli with the PD’s now they got our shit on replay)
Sorry I’m in pajamas but I just got off the P.J
And last party we had, they shut down Prive
(Ain’t that where the Heat play? Niggas hate ballas these days)
Ain’t that like Lebron James? (Ain’t that just like D. Wade? Wait)

And I the only one that caught that LeBron James/D. Wade comparison? The media loves Jay-Z but still hates Kanye?

The track is the shortest off WTT but it still fits. With the James Brown samples and the synths, the Neptunes/Kanye produced track I imagined sounds just like this.

6. New Day
Produced by The RZA, Kanye West, Mike Dean, & Ken Lewis
In the reports from the WTT listening session, this one was called the “letter to their unborn sons” song. Appropriately so. In terms of lyrics, “New Day” is the most deep and meaningful song on the album. While Jay-Z sounds pretty inspired talking to his future junior, it’s Kanye’s verse that gets the quotable here:

~Kanye West~
And I’ll never let him leave his college girlfriend
And get caught up with the groupies in the whirlwind
And I’ll never let him ever hit the telethon
I mean even if people dyin’ and the world ends
See, I just want him to have an easy life
Not like Yeezy life, just want him to be someone people like

The production doesn’t slouch here either; the way the sample was used is ridiculous. Any beat that gets Nina Simone and Auto-Tune to work should get a appalause.

Jay-Z & Kanye connected well with The RZA.

7. That’s My Bitch
Produced by Q-Tip, Kanye West, & Jeff Bhasker
And we from “New Day” we go to this? Kind of jarring but okay.

When this initially leaked late last year, I didn’t really care for it. Months later I still don’t. Don’t get me wrong, it’s tolerable. But it’s sounds like something Heavy D would have rapped on in his heyday. But hey, most people I talked to about this song liked it so maybe it’s me. I’m sure it’ll make the club go crazy in London or somewhere like that.

Honestly, this one may grow on me in the future.

8. Welcome To The Jungle
Produced by Swizz Beatz, Mike Dean, & Ken Lewis
Swizzy! Thankfully this isn’t the “Gucci Time” version of Swizz Beatz that produced this beat, but the better “On To The Next One” version (I’m loving his ad-libs here too. “Right”).

Jay-Z takes the driver seat here as he get most of the exposure over Yeezy. Seems like fame & riches may been getting to Hov :

~Jay-Z~
My tears is tatted, my rag in my pocket
I’m just looking for love, I know somebody got it
Champagne for the pain, weed for the low
God damn I’m so high, where the fuck did I go?
I’m losing myself, I’m stuck in the moment
I look in the mirror, my only opponent

This may get looked over by some, but it shouldn’t.

9. Who Gon Stop Me
Produced by Sham “Sak Pase” Joseph, Kanye West, & Mike Dean
I heard that Kanye & Jay-Z tired dubstep for this album. Here where it happens (Also, it seems they brought over Swizz’s ad-libs from the previous track).

The track as a whole is basically a war cry asking the world if they can hold the duo back. The Flux Pavilion sample throughout may get on some nerves, but personally I think it adds to the track. It’s at the end that takes some getting used to; the long verse from Jay sounds a little off but I’m thinking that may have been the aim.

Sidenote: Some people won’t like Kanye’s Holocaust reference at all.

10. Murder To Excellence
Produced by Swizz Beatz & S1
On first listen of this album, this was hands down my favorite. It still is.

First cool thing to note here is that it’s actually two beats bookending each other: Swizz Beatz produced “Murder” with S1 producing “Excellence”. But not only does the sound have a theme but the content as well. The first part of the song deals with the black on black crimes that still plauge the community with the second celebrating Black excellence.

~Kanye West~
And I’m from the murder capital where they murder for capital
Heard about at least three killings this afternoon
Looking at the news like “damn! I was just with him after school”
No shop class but half the school got a tool
And “I could die any day”-type attitude
Plus his little brother got shot repping his avenue

~Jay-Z~
It’s a celebration of black excellence
Black tie, black Maybachs
Black excellence, opulence, decadence
Tuxes next to the president, I’m present
I dress in Dries and other boutique stores in Paris

Didn’t expect Jay & Ye to get social conscious huh? And they sound really good doing it. Dope track.

11. Made In America
Featuring Frank Ocean; Produced by Sham “Sak Pase” Joseph & Mike Dean
I spoke earlier about the weird sequencing on some of these tracks, but “Made In America” paired with the previous one was perfect. Epic sounding stuff right here too.

Frank Ocean returns to lay down the groundwork with a hook mentioning visionaries like Malcolm X to even Jesus (You can start questioning an Odd Future member shouting out Jesus…NOW).

Backed with a dreamy beat, the whole track sounds like a triumph for all those involved celebrating to success and overcoming obstacles to get achieve it. Both rappers give you examples:

~Kanye West~
I told my mama I was on the come up
She said “you going to school I’ll give you a summer”
Then she met NO ID and gave me his number
10 years later she driving a Hummer

~Jay-Z~
No papa, bad Santa
The streets raised me, pardon my bad manners
I got my liberty chopping grams up
Street justice, I pray God understand us
I pledge allegiance to all the scramblers
This is the Star Spangled Banner

12. Why I Love You
Featuring Mr Hudson; Produced by Mike Dean, Kanye West
Remember when I said “Lift Off” was probably the perfect radio sample for this album, “Why I Love You” may be the second one. Relying heavily on the Cassius sample (That Mr Hudson re-sung), the song has a huge feel to it.

Jay-Z is mostly by himself with Kanye throwing in lines here ad there. But one reason for this is so Jay can address a few things:

~Jay-Z (Kanye West)~
Wasn’t I a good king? (Maybe too much of a good thing, huh?)
Didn’t I spoil you? Me or the money, what you loyal to?
(Huh, I gave you my loyalty) Made you royalty and royalties
(Took care of these niggas lawyer fees) And this is how niggas rewardin’ me

Some people may recognized the second verse as the one Jay-Z was laying down on the Watch The Throne Documentary.

Beans gonna feel a type a way about some of these lines.

13. Illest Motherfucker Alive
Produced by Southside, Kanye West, & Mike Dean
Don’t feel bad about the three minutes of silence before the track, it’s like that for everybody  (Maybe it was Illuminati code?). But when the song begins, it’s more of the sophisticated ignorance that Janye does so well. The violins and opera singing make this one even better. Jay-Z compares his 11 #1 consecutive album ato Bill Russell’s championship rings. But it Yeezy drunken rhymes that takes center stage:

~Kanye West~
What you after, actor money?
You in line behind currency, yeah you after money
Bullet proof condom when I’m in these hoes
Got staples on my dick (why) fuckin’ centerfolds

I expected a video for this song…in slow motion…maybe directed by Hype Williams?

14. H*A*M
Produced by Lex Luger, Kanye West, & Mike Dean
When this song dropped, I was skeptical about Jay & Kanye over a Lex Luger beat. But the end results were hard to argue with; this shit goes hard. Plus, I still think Jay-Z killed his here (Maybe one of the year’s best):

~Jay-Z~
Niggas fantasize about the shit that I do daily
Like these rappers rap about all the shit that I do really
I’m like really half a billion nigga, really you got baby money
Keep it real with niggas, niggas ain’t got my lady’s money
Watch the Throne don’t step on our robe
Bad enough we let you step on our globe

Still hard as a motherfucker.

15. Primetime
Produced by No I.D.
No I.D. hooked The Throne up with a crazy piano laced track (The Orange Krush sample is pretty cool too). Jay-Z lets loose a nice verse filled with numbers (“At 42, I’ll be better than 24’s/I carry the 4-5 master 48 laws”) while Yeezy raps about the excess and all it’s advantages (“Damn, Yeezy, it all gotta be dimes?/Well Adam gave up a rib, so mine better be prime”)

Real Hip-Hop shit here but I can understand why it’s relegated to the “Deluxe Version” status.

16. The Joy
Featuring Curtis Mayfield; Produced by Pete Rock, Kanye West, & Mike Dean
The Joy” was originally part of Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music series but it’s welcomed here as well. With all the tracks on this album, it’s good to have a grounded track to give it some balance. The sample is still obvious, but the song is still nice.

Bottom Line:
The night when Watch The Throne was released and the masses got to finally listen to the final product, I got some e-mails and texts with messages like “It’s not a classic” or “It didn’t live up to the hype”. I got some positive ones too but I felt all decisions were too quick.

For the people that walked into listening to this album with an open mind, they were treated to a great big album by Jay-Z & Kanye West. From the interludes that sandwich between some of the tracks to the main production, you can tell each song was thought out and well made. It’s also not as focused on materialism or excess as some would think. For songs like “That’s My Bitch” & “Illest Motherfucker Alive” there’s track like “New Day” or “Murder to Excellence” that balance out the album.

Things that keep this album from getting the highly rare 5 Stars are weird sequencing and not every song being a complete slam dunk. Also, if you dislike the previous last solo outings from Kanye (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy) or Jay-Z (Blueprint 3) you may have trouble here as Watch The Throne could be looked as a mash up of two albums.

This album is a celebration of the Black elite, luxury rap, & success. Even if your not into those this, the spectacle that is Watch The Throne is a worthwhile ride. Time and repeated listens will dictate how memorable the ride will be.

  • H2O

    This was actually a pretty fair review imo. Great job B-Easy; I won’t lie, you had me worried at first lol.

    • A Reader!

      Yeah, I agree. A job done well by B-Easy, but still I cant help myself thinking how dope a Saule Wright written review for this would’ve been!!

      Well now I’m looking forward to his feedback/thoughts on album over this post right here.

      • Uh, thanks?

      • Is this Saule Wright?

        • DJ LP

          I was thinking the same

  • P (From Da D)

    “15 number one albums. 27 Grammy wins. Countless trends started. Major festivals headlined. Millions of albums sold. Hip-Hop’s two biggest stars, Kanye West & Jay-Z, connected together not only set out to make Watch The Throne a great album but a great event.”

    Right from the beggining I knew how this review was gonna be LOL

  • P (From Da D)

    OK first off nobody in their right unbiased mind would give this album a 4.5, Easy ive been trying to be cool with you Easy and I was honestly hoping you wouldnt do this on this album, but you did. Even in your own reviews a lot of the songs you made sound just so-so. Let this have been a KRS-One and DJ Premier album or something like that this would be a 3 to a 3.5. A 4.5 stars to me means classic, so you can bring out other rap classics and this compares? I dont think so not by a long shot. To have a album thats 4.5 in the first place the beats on the album gotta be great at least 90% of the time, and we know that wasnt the case this time. Just the two intially leaked songs at first (H.A.M, and Otis) stops this album from being a 4.5 alone! I dont care about Kanye and Jay as celebrities I wanna hear that shit! And then outta knowhere after speaking pure ignorance and materialism, they wanna get political? GTFOH, that forced shit! They can give a fuck about the regular community. It was solid man but damn a 4.5? You shouldnt have been allowed to do this anyway

    • First off, thanks for reading.

      Now, didn’t you review that Danny Brown’s The Hybrid? Didn’t you give that album 4.5 (http://goo.gl/yMdM7)? Watch The Throne shits on that album. Do you know how many times Danny Brown said he was gonna fuck my woman and shot a nigga on that album? (Hint: A lot) But for some reason, that gets a pass yet this album is “pure ignorance and materialism”. Okay.

      And how in the hell does getting political & social conscious sounds forced (Especially for Kanye who cames up the game doing songs with Common, Mos Def, & Talib Kweli)?

      Also, if you remember how I felt about tracks like “H.A.M” and “Otis”, I initially like both songs (as I spoke about in the review).

      Buy hey, this review is only MY opinion.

      • DJ LP

        I’ve got to agree with B-Easy on his argument against you. Your starting to sound a little like Jerm when he went on his Jay-Z rant in the forums not too long ago (http://forums.nappyafro.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=5422)

        You also have to remember that alot of us do review things differently and like different styles of Music. B-Easy being the opposite style of Jerm basically. No hate though

        • DJ LP

          This was suppose to be in reply to the B-Easy post below where he starts off about “rubbing our faces in it”

      • P (From Da D)

        Well I guess that true that is an opinion…..but looking back I admit The Hybrid isnt a 4.5, but ill give you that its hard to choose a rating from 5. Cuz that album didnt need to miss a whole star in my opinion…but it also wasnt near perfect. I think a 1-10 would be better or even 1-100 but I understand this is yall format. And maybe for Kanye getting political isnt weird, he does seem to care a lil but as far as Jay………… LOL. And really I dont mind ignorance but to me their kinda ignorance is condescending and not positive, and not only that it could have been done much better.

        • “And really I dont mind ignorance but to me their kinda ignorance is condescending and not positive”

          So ignorance is NOT positive. Okay. Gotcha.

          • P (From Da D)

            Like when you listen to someone like Gucci Mane its like party music get you hype and happy, but when you listen to this its just straight out “im better than you, have tons of money, I can do this you cant, yall my sons, i invented trends” after a point its like come on man

          • DJ LP

            the same could be said about so many other rappers with their topics ^^^

          • Nelly

            I have to admit I agree with P (from the d). There is a difference in ignorant rap, and the ignorance “janye” decided to go with gets tired the quickest (in my opinion). While I don’t think it was a 4.5, I can’t imagine given it anything less than a solid 4 (I could be biased, since I am a fan of both). Oddly enough I agree with the song by song review, I just think the sum of that review should have lead to an 4 outta 5 rating.

            (yes I understand I’m arguing over half a point, but I just really agree with P. That half a point puts it in the classic status, while a 4 would have just meant a good cd).

  • DuB

    4.5? This shit was at least a 6.

  • P-Body

    For a second I thought you was going to give this album a 6 out of 5 or something. This album is no 4.5 though, well not to me. The thing about kids enjoying Niggas In Paris since they like Waka Flocka is all the way wrong….

    The song with Beyonce is garbage to me, sounds too pop like. I like pop but not from Jay-Z & Ye. They actually got that “New Day” or Unborn son type of song from 2Pac since he did his first… But I do like New Day, Prime Time, Otis, and Made In America a lot though.

    I’ll give this album a 3.5 due to the fact Jay-Z and Kanye made better stuff in the past. It is better than Blueprint 3 and My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy album, I didn’t really like those albums much except a few songs. The thing about these guys is that they rubbed it in our face on how rich they are like we don’t know! A lot of us don’t have much money and the last thing we want to hear on almost every song is how Jay got “All black everything”. I do like floss rap sometimes but it is enough of it already.

    The singing Kanye does is terrible! Somebody need to be honest with him and stop being a yes man.

    H.a.M. grew on me but it still sound forced.

    Overall the album is good though and I like it but some songs should have been replaced with something else they have in the vault. Not a classic, maybe for 2011 standards

    • P-Body

      Oh yeah awesome review though and I love that “Thats My Bitch” song. That shit knocks. They do have some jams on this bitch. I’ll be lying if I said this album sucked, but its not classic in my eye.

    • “The thing about these guys is that they rubbed it in our face on how rich they are like we don’t know!”

      Sounds a little like hating but okay. But considering that most popular rappers do this, arguing this point is kinda useless.. Jay & Kanye are actually telling the truth about their money and actually they have rhymes talking about the confusion of being close to hood but yet going to Paris and being rich.

      “I’ll give this album a 3.5 due to the fact Jay-Z and Kanye made better stuff in the past”

      Huh? This is how we grading stuff now? Every Nas album after Illmatic can’t be classic. Personally, I feel if niggas want they old stuff, they can always go on iTunes and buy they old albums.

      I am really happy you got a 2Pac reference in there though. Good job.

      • P-Body

        C’mon B, Jay-Z isn’t the same calibur emcee he once was. Dude use to be really ill, he still is ill but a little less iller than he was. You’re right about the flossing part and yes they do have money instead of faking it like a lot of rappers do but, yes there is a but… But they are capable of doing much more. I’m not hating at all I’m just saying we all know how much dude is worth and shit. That’s why I really got tired of 50 Cent besides him beefing for record sales.

        I’m not saying I want Jay-Z to be all hood because I’m not and I’m glad he changed his circle since he is much older now but I just want to hear him spit more on the economic situations a lot of are facing right now. He have the power to do that musically. It’s not like dude is depending on record sales or having record exec’s down his back about making an hot single.

        Just like I told you on the phone my standards for Jay-Z is very high so when he don’t execute it I start to question Jigga man. Dude is in my Top 10 emcees of all time, shouldn’t that be enough?

        Nas did have classic albums like It Was Written which I thought was better than illmatic, God’s Son was awesome! I liked The Lost Tapes.. Untitled was good, and I Am was good but it could have been better. Nastradamous wasn’t good but it wasn’t the most terrible thing I heard, I wish he would have used the unreleased songs for that album instead.. A lot of unreleased stuff sound better than the songs he released.

        I see you quoting Jay-Z line about the buy the old albums part and that is sweet. Well you should already know if anything Jay did that bite Pac I’m going to mention it, just like the song “Some People Hate” Jay-Z took Pac lines from “Against All Odds” and “Ambition Az A Ridah”.

        Watch The Throne isn’t a terrible at all and you keep missing the point. The album is good to me and I like it but I don’t love it, its not great to me as people hyping it up. If Jay-Z would have never made songs like Bring It On, In My Lifetime, This Can’t Be Life, Ain’t No Nigga, Hard Knock Life, What The Game Made Me and so forth then my standards for Jay-Z wouldn’t be high… Would a dude like that put out quality songs like that especially consistent the way he was doing it then I be expecting him to make hits after hits like those gems. This album would probably have more stars from me if Jay never would have spoiled me with those classics.

        • You do know that Kanye is also on the album too right?

          • P-Body

            Of course but I’m speaking on Jay right now. Kanye kinda outshined Jay on this album the more I think about it. Remember a few years ago I said sometimes Kanye lyrics be better than Jay-Z. This is a solid effort so I can’t hate on this album and say it sucked, because it don’t suck

          • DJ LP

            Gotta disagree with P-Body. My main point we know on the Bad Meets Evil album Nickel constantly kept up with Eminem if not passed him when it came to the lyrics but NO WHERE have I read that Em has lost it. Em had a recent terrible album and I don’t see anyone questioning Em’s skills so why do it to Jay just because Kanye keeps up with him on a collab album. Just a thought

          • P-Body

            I see what you’re saying LP but I really hold Jay-Z at a higher standard than I do with Eminem… Trust me after that Encore album and when he fucked up 2Pac album with them wack beats I wrote Eminem off as a loser. Anybody that know me in person know how I am with Pac music. I just started back listening to Eminem when Relapse came out which I didn’t like much but I did like Recovery and Bad Meets Evil. Em isn’t the same calibur emcee he once was himself, dude use to be super ill.

        • Eagle Eye

          I can feel you on that!

  • ghost

    american gangster waz a classic

  • Eagle Eye

    I think this review was great. Fair and balance review without being over over zealous fan or stan. With that said I can say the album was worth my purchase (I tunes $15 dam bucks)……….

    The lyrics are great by Jay and Yeezy and the beats are on point. The sequence was solid but not good (nor great)… I will give the album a 4 star holding the 1/2 star until a few more listen. This album is on par with Trill Og, Distant Relatives, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,Telfon Don,Shaolin Vs. Wu-Tang and Recovery for the album in my collection I cherish over the last 12-16 months (not counting mixtape). This is Epic and jay Z best work since the Black Album (I’m huge Jay Z – love all his work) and Kayne is itching closer to my top 10 status. Willo see where this album ranks in terms of best hip hop album of the yr. Rht now I would say yes along with Rae S.V.W album… But with Common, Nas, Wayne,Drake and Dr. Dre coming alot of comp.

  • bigt915

    I bought it with HIGH exceptions and i felt like they were met. Honestly, the production is far and away the highlight of the album.

    MBDTF > WTT > BP3

    Also, i prefer this album over Bad Meets Evil in every way.

    Album of the year though? No, that honer will go to Mr. J. Cole. (Where is he on this album anyway!?)

    • DuB

      J. Cole album 9/27

    • Eagle Eye

      I can agree with tht.. 4got about J. Cole Play..

  • “OK first off nobody in their right unbiased mind would give this album a 4.5, Easy ive been trying to be cool with you Easy and I was honestly hoping you wouldnt do this on this album, but you did.”

    Best line of the day!

    Funny to see B-Easy going back and forth about a review!

  • DuB

    On some real shit……. I probably would have give this a 4 but stop hating on B. Some of y’all have given bullshit albums 4’s and 4.5’s.

    • DJ LP

      no arguments there

    • shots fired???

      • DuB

        Shots fired!!!

        • *puts on vest*

          • DJ LP

            *Cough* DJ Khaled – Victory *Cough*

    • saule wright

      damn DuB lol,

      • DuB

        I’m just keepin it one hunded

  • saule wright

    I think our album of the year votes just got interesting

  • H2O

    Right now WTT is Album of the Year, if you don’t think so you are lying to yourself. I really cant think of any other albums that came out this year besides Bad Meets Evil and Goblin that were really on the same level as this.

    • DJ LP

      I’ve got to agree with ya. Possibly even Saigon

    • DuB

      Kendrick Lamar is in the conversation too. Yet this wins easily. Still the year isn’t over.

      • H2O

        That was a mixtape. I loved Section 80, but I intentionally omitted it because its a mixtape.

        • I think Kendrick Lamar feels that Section.80 is an album. But then again, it’s so hard to tell these days…

        • DuB

          Its an album. I paid for it and everything.

          • So you paid money for a mixtape?

          • DuB

            Lol its even classified as an album.

          • P (From Da D)

            Yeah its an album Jerm, if it aint free its an album 2 me

          • Nelly

            I liked wtt, I like “janye”, but on the real……. Section 80 was better. Jus sayin……

  • P (From Da D)

    Ive always thought Kanye’s lyrics have been great,just in a different way then than they are now. I mean just lately??????Kanye been on par lyrically since Through The Wire….whole career

    • P-Body

      That is true sir. To me Kanye been a lyrical beast and I thought he was super dope during the College Dropout era. What made me get ticked off with Kanye is his attitude when he don’t win or have things going his way. He act too much like a spoiled brat now. Dude use to be so damn humbled in the beginning.

      • P (From Da D)

        Yeah I know, thats what the industry will to do you I guess tho….drive you crazy. If you ask me Kanye has what it takes to be the GOAT. I wouldnt call him it now especially since he making mainly pop but he definently has the talent and subject matter too

  • P (From Da D)

    Hey but can anyone argue with this one at all……….if your “outrapped” on a whole album by your producer you cant be the greatest of all time.

    • P-Body

      I’ll say this.. Kanye isn’t your average producer dude is very talented and a great writer. If he was Swizz Beats or Timbaland then yea that would be a different story and I’ll question Jay-Z status if that was to actually happen.

      • P (From Da D)

        But the point is he was out rapped. Can you imagine this happening to someone like Nas over a whole course of an album? Im not saying Jay aint a great, but Kanye isnt even considered a masterful lyricist by a lot of hip hop listeners (even tho I consider him one) and he out rapped Jay. What would Jay do if someone threw him on an album with Eminem or Nas? Its a bodybad smh

        • Rickjamesbitch

          Kanye is really underrated as a lyricist, he has really good punchlines and wordplay, this album showed that.
          And Jay isn’t what he used to be, he was better here than on BP3 though

          • I disagree Rickjamesbitch about you saying he was better here than on BP3 though. Did you listen to that song call thankyou on BP3? listen to the 3rd verse about the whole 9/11 metaphor he did flawlessly and then honestly tell me he did anything on this album that creative lyrically.

            I think Jay did solid on this album and in certain cases good, but that verse on Bp3 blew me away.

          • Nah…he was better on BP3. He looked like he was strugglin out there on this project. Nothing really to get excited about on this album.

            But I’m sure the Jay-Z fanboys (B-Easy, Chip, H2O, DuB) will say I’m hating for that comment.

          • DuB

            Lol…. since when am I considered a “Jay-Z Fanboy”?

    • DuB

      Ill agree with your statement, but Hov wasn’t outrapped by Ye on this entire album. Not by a long shot.

      • P (From Da D)

        Yeah Jay did his things at times 2. But Kanye ate em 2 me

        • DuB

          We will have to agree to disagree I guess

      • Sheeeeeeeeit

        Kanye did get the best of him on this.

      • SECOND BEST COMMENT

  • P (From Da D)

    But at the end of the day…….while I dont think this is good as many people make it out to be, it is good for hip hop to be getting albums like this out there. Dont call me a hater I just like what I like.

  • This Guy

    U can’t be serious about Jay killin it on H.A.M….

  • Eagle Eye

    Ok… Listen to to this album a more few times. This album is dope. People just think if Waka & Gucci did this album. We would be given this a 5 star rating…… Mostly due to expectations — I’m not going hold prior work (Resonalbe Doubt, Blueprint,College Dropout & Graduation) against this album dopeness. I call that the Illmatic effect….lol Let the new work stand on its on as if this were 2 artist you nver heard of debut to be fair. If my Michael Jordan last two yr as Wizard were his frist 2 yr as a Unknown we would be calling him the next Kobe..(think about it)….lol

    Jay Z is still good as he was on RD and Black Album. Kayne is great writer (top ten without question). On “We run this town Kanye bodied Jay — but not on this ablum…… If you listen to Primetime, Murder to Excellence, that my b and no church. Jay Z had quotable after quotable on this album. Imo Nas Distant Relative pushed Jay Z to better and more creative with his rhyme skim. Nas & Jay still push each other creativitly Imo….

    Futhermore this is different sound —- but that’s what we need in Hip Hop is for artist to push the creative bar. WTT did tht for me. dope lyrics & dope beats (what more do y’all want).. thts all I ask for from artist. Spent $15 bucks and got blessed. Bad Vs Evil was solid but for me Royce & Em were just rapping (which is ok). Just prefer incorporating lyrics with subject matter about real life. Real Rap! This review was on par with for me. Good review!

    • See, THAT’S how you make an intelligent comment. (*salutes*)

      • Eagle Eye

        Thanks. Salute you 2!

        • Word. Comment more often.

      • I 2nd that!

  • Yo Easy tho, I’m pretty sure thats LOLOLOLOL at the top of gotta have it.

    Idk right now this sits at 4.5 for me. I love it. Only thing I cant really get down with is Lift Off, but the productions mad good so it got decent plays. Some of these songs are genius, and speaking as a big fan of BP3 and American Gangster, Jay sounds super inspired and energized, the most since 2003. Seeing that Jungle and Why I love you are essentially dolo Hov songs it kinda exposes the comfortable-ness of BP3 and I have real high hopes that he pushes through this creative spark for the 12th lp. I was expecting to have to defend him Run this Town style but he did the damn thing. Ye did the damn thing. This does not feel like a Ye album featuring Jay. this does not feel like a Jay album featuring Ye. It’s a collab and a holy fuck gotdamn good one. And for ppl that say it sounds like a Ye album sonically well no shit, Jay isn’t a producer, Ye’s directed the first Blueprint as well. Only difference here is he saved/mined beats that he might normally save for his own solo.

    good review. I think this can ascend to 5 heights after time. Not liking thats my bitch is mystifying that shit knocks.

    • Oh shit its not lolol just looked in the liners. Nahright lied to me

  • johnny tufly

    Man this niggas on here hate for no reason. No this is not a jayz album nor a kanye album……this is them as a group and as a group they fused these sounds and wrote some magical songs. BTW its not bragging if u got it. These guys are on top of the Forbes list…..hell yeah om gonna talk about my money. What you’d rather hear ace hood rap about the money he does NOT have? My only problem is how the songs are listed. In my opinion the album should have been more dark and serious at the beginning and in the later parts have songs like lift off and that’s my bitch. Other than that this album is a clever mind fuck if u think about it cuz ur own personal expectations were Prolly oh this is gonna sound like run this town all cd long. When in reality they created a whole new artist and gave us fresh music. Instead of comparing everything we should appreciate this art. No one makes albums anymore its just xrandom songs put together. Janye thought out every track. And no one out rapped anybody. They played their part. Hov played the cocky arrogant big guy while kanye played the asshole with wordplay. This reminds me of redman and method man on steroids. They feed off eachother so well. U people really should stop over readding into things and just enjoy this art

  • Pitbull

    I wanna agree with the 4.5 but I can’t. I feel that a 3.5 would have done it justice. I’m not comparing it to any of their other work, that would be preposterous! But I mean this album as a whole, the concept is nothing new. The sound is nothing new. And the chemistry is nothing new. I feel that were giving it too much credit because it IS a solid album and NOT a letdown. But as far as saying it’s damn near a classic is just crazy.

  • ThaTruth

    B easy made a accurate point. As a fan of both and a artistic person myself , I didn’t like their last Projects, Blueprint 3 and My Dark Twisted Fantasy. WTT sound like I heard it all before and there were only 3 or 4 main songs that stood out from the rest. I felt that the album was artistic and will capture your mine of imagination but it was nothing I could feel from it. Nothing wasn’t heartfelt except for New Day and Made in America. There are no live instrumentation and it didn’t live up to my expectations. I could go pin point in details why I care less about most of the songs on here and lyrics have nothing to do with it but just the choice of arrangements and production for it. I could definitely compares most of the songs to their past projects including the samples kanye used. Most of the production IMO was Very Simple and I wasn’t impress at all. I cant ride down the block and have lift off blastin through my speakers lol Its sound like a disney Anthem or a song for a princess whether than for a King . A production from Dj Toomp would of been nice for Watch The Throne. Mostly every song was predictable ,Production and Subject matters. Nothing Special.

  • ThaTruth

    I take that back Blueprint 3 was good

  • arkitekt

    This shit is above average. Their are some great tracks, but alot of average tracks too. The lyrics are decent, expected more from Jay, seems like he only showed up for half of the album. Production could be better, Kanye is one of the best producers out, but alot of these beats are too sugar coated for my taste. He needs to stop adding a handful of producers to make one track because in the ends it sounds overproduced and unnecessary. For example, No Church In The Wild was banging until that wack autotune bridge. The album ain’t bad, just expected more… nowhere close to record of the year.

    What stoodout to me: Otis, Gotta Have It, New Day, Murder to Excellence, HAM, Primetime, The Joy

    • H2O

      What is then?

    • H2O

      And how the hell does Made in America not stand out to you?

      • arkitekt

        3.25/5 and i’m being lenient

        That track is good but Frank Ocean should’ve made it his own. Not feelin’ the rhymes from both Jay & Kanye, they came weak as hell on it. PLus the beat is simple and plain.

        • H2O

          I meant whats record of the year then…and to each their own I guess.

          • P-Body

            This record of the year term is being used so loosely nowadays. We need to wait until the rest of the year finish up before we can say what is album of the year material. I don’t see this is a being album of the year even though I do like it, but I don’t love it though.

          • saule wright

            it’s nothing different than picking a pre-season favorite or a favorite during the season. You think of what came out so far, and see where this measures and right now, this is definitely in the running SO FAR

          • arkitekt

            Return of 4Eva
            Section 80
            Oneirology
            We Are Renegades
            Rhymatic Eternal King Supreme
            The Greatest Story Never Told
            Shaolin vs Wu-Tang…to name a few

            I gave it a few more spins and I came to the conclusion that this is rich people music….I’m broke so it’s definitely not for me.

          • P-Body

            @Saule
            I like the album but I don’t love it… That’s what I’m saying. I liked Curren$y stuff more than I do this album. I can’t wait until Freddie Gibbs put out some albums. Big K.R.I.T. is one of the dopest albums out this year man. I have to co-sign with Arkitekt on the rich people rap line. Most of the songs are rich people stuff and I can’t relate to that. If they rap more about the struggle and something for the people I can relate to it more. That’s why I can jam to Nas a little more since he spit stuff that I can relate to. This album is overrated though.

  • P-Body

    After listening to this album a little more I’ll give it a 4 but it still seem to be over produced and two worldly. I’m not trying to hear that from both of these guys. I’ll give it a 4 for today’s standards but overall when thinking about the best hip hop albums of all time this is no way on that list…. Once again I really don’t like that song with Beyonce, it sound like shit that would be on her album… Album is good though but just too overproduced and if they would have had more tracks like Primetime, New Day, Otis and so forth like that this album would have been much enjoyable to me. Then again I’ll probably stick with my 3.5 rating since I haven’t listen to it none today. It’s not one of those albums I could listen to all the time. I listen to Curren$y & Alchemist album way more than I did with this one. They should have had some beats from that album

  • saule wright

    for all the dislikes y’all talking about and stating there were weak lyrics and content, there are worse bars and content in some of these replies.

  • saule wright
    • P-Body

      I just now noticed that video. Wow! A lot of artist been falling on the stage lately for some reason.

  • Eagle Eye

    Sorry junior, I already ruined ya
    ‘Cause you ain’t even alive, paparazzi pursuin’ ya
    Sins of a father make yo’ life ten times harder
    I just wanna take ya to a barber
    Bondin’ on charters, all the shit that I never did
    Teach ya good values, so you cherish it
    Took me 26 years to find my path
    My only job is cuttin’ the time in half
    So at 13 we’ll have our first drink together
    Black bar mitzvahs, mazel tov, mogul talk
    Look a man dead in his eyes
    So he know you talk truth when you speak it, give your word, keep it
    And if the day comes I only see him on the weekend
    I just pray we was in love on the night that we conceived him
    Promise to never leave him even if his mama tweakin’
    Cause my dad left me and I promise never repeat him
    Never repeat him, never repeat him

    Jay-Z – New Day

    Jay did not fall off — congrad to him and his wife.