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Jul 13th, 2013 18:55pm
 Jay-Z: Nickels and Dimes

Magna Carta... Holy Grail

Jay-Z's certified Platinum album Magna Carta... Holy Grail charted this week with mixed reception, undoubtably releasing his new LP so close to his good friend Kanye West has opened up the inevitable debate of comparison. Since the idiosyncratic Kanye has gone for various obscure and experimental directions on Yeezus, Jay-Z's MCHG sounds more traditional in structure leaning heavily on Timbaland productions, so if Jay-Z is watching the throne - Kanye's sitting on it. Magna Carta Holy Grail does dish-up some killer tracks but there are a few not so great tracks. 

The collaborations are the songs that stand out F*ckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt (feat. Rick Ross) with it's slow moody electro beat is a brooding and dark chilled-out hip-hop film score with Ricks familiar drawl complementing Jay's lively style. Another highlight is the sublime contribution from Frank Ocean on Oceans, Frank is definitely on fire at the moment in the wake of the successful Channel Orange. His voice supports Jay-Z's delivery with class and style, it could have featured with the best tracks on Watch The Throne. This track Nickels and Dimes, which is of course an original song by the distinguished Gonjasufi and produced by Gaslamp Killer, taken from Gonjasufi's album MU.ZZ.LE, which was released last year. (Hear the original here on neoloop). Jay-Z doesn't change much of the original tune, rhyming effortlessly over it as if it was meant to be that way. Showing that Jay-Z has a good ear for an underground tune.

While Jay-Z is a powerhouse brand nowadays, bragging rights on Picasso Baby are reserved for making billions and trillions as opposed to making millions, few rap artists are in his league. So while Jay-Z sells his album to a phone company for an exclusive release, El-P and Killer Mike are giving one away for free. The whole game of releasing music is an entirely different landscape in 2013, anything goes I guess, but I can't help thinking no one has quite topped the radical shock return to a media-saturated world quite like Bowie did earlier this year. As for Magna Carta... Holy Grail it's already gone Platium.

Nickels and Dimes originally by Gonjasufi

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Categories: Hip Hop
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