Jay-Z and Kanye West have finally released their collaborative album ‘Watch the Throne.’This has epic-ness written all over it with 2 of the most versatile rappers in music coming together to produce somewhat like a powerful documentation of hip-hop music.
The album is filled with inspiring songs dealing with society ills, the price of fame and religion. The set’s first single ‘Otis’ (featuring Otis Redding) sees both men carve out a space for each other to lyrically shine on the collection as they display their own unique swagger.
The duo enlisted the likes of Swizz Beatz, the RZA, No I.D., Q-Tip, Lex Luger, the Neptunes, 88-Keys and more studio veterans to work on this album. Event the likes of Beyonce, Frank Ocean and Mr Hudson have notable hook guest appearances.
Some of the stand out tracks on the album include ‘New Day,’ ‘Made in America’ and ‘Primetime.’ New Day, Jay-Z and Kanye West connect with Wu-Tang Clan leader the RZA for one of the most powerful songs on the album that will make you stop and think. The rap artistes speak to their unborn children and warn them of what to expect on this earth which really is something to ponder about.
Made in America sees another major player on the album. It’s a bittersweet song featuring the great vocals of singer-songwriter Frank Ocean as he sings a mournful tribute to Martin Luther King Jr., Coretta Scott-King, Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz. Jay-Z and West mostly reflect on their own path of success in this track.
Over the course of 12 songs, Jay-Z and Kanye West display a sense of realism and honestly that you rarely hear today. The most compelling aspect of “Watch The Throne”, and it’s one that we’ve come to appreciate, is the lyrical dynamic between Jay-Z and Kanye West. One goes for more complex rhymes while the other always wears his heart on his sleeve in his raps. There’s a lot of reflection in this album and while both of them have honestly produced better work as solo artistes, this album has respect for themselves, each other and the harsh reality of life.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
An album to appeal to the true hip-hop fan
Watch The Throne is out in stores now
By Connor J. Bale
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