NO CHURCH IN THE WILD (ft. Frank Ocean)
Coke on her black skin make a stripe like a zebra /
I call that jungle fever
LIFT OFF (ft. Beyoncé)
The drop at the end of NIGGAS IN PARIS is the s**t. It all goes down at 2.43. It sounds like something off of ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’, but dirtier. It’s grimy, filthy & the piano paired with the fuzzy bass = perfection. Definitely a highlight of the album, perhaps my favourite bit?! OTIS (ft. Otis Redding) is my jam, partly because I love Otis Redding, but it also has something to do with the way Kanye loops his vocals to create a skipping, trippy beat. It just makes me want to move. It helps that both Hip Hop heavyweights tear up the track.
GOTTA HAVE IT
NEW DAY showcases a softer side. The clever sample from ‘Feeling Good’, the melancholic beat and the haunting horns make this one of the record’s more emotive songs.
Me and the RZA connect / Me and the RZA connect / Sorry junior, I already ruined ya / Cause you ain’t even alive, paparazzi pursuin’ ya / Sins of a father make your life ten times harder / I just wanna take ya to a barber / Bondin’ on charters, all the sh*t that I never did / Teach ya good values so you cherish it / Took me 26 years to find my path / My only job is cut 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 (x2)
The pace picks up once again with the pulsating beat of THAT’S MY BITCH (ft. Elly Jackson). The hook of WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE makes me think of ‘So Appalled’ off of Kanye’s last record and the melody of the track sounds uncannily familiar, but I can’t quite figure out why….WHO GON STOP ME adopts a Dubstep flex and somehow manages to sound like it came out of the UK. Both Jay and ‘Ye also sound younger, fresher, more energised on the track. They go IN.
MURDER TO EXCELLENCE
MADE IN AMERICA (ft. Frank Ocean)
Downtown mixing fabrics tryina find the magic / Started a little blog just to get some traffic / Old folks’ll tell you not to play in traffic / A million hits and the web crashes …Damn / South Park had ‘em all laughing / Now all my ni**as designing and we all swag- gin’ / Ignore the critics just to say we did it / This ain’t no fashion show, motherf***er we live it
TUNE. Frank Ocean’s vocals sit beautifully on the minimal beat. And y’all know I love me some piano…
WHY I LOVE YOU (Mr Hudson)
ILLEST MOTHERFUCKER ALIVE
I can’t be the only one who LOVES the opera singing at the end of this track?
THE JOY (ft. Curtis Mayfield)
People are always going to have very high expectations when two people as incredible & influential as Jay-Z and Kanye collaborate, especially when it happens to be a whole record. On first listen, there are some standout tracks and then there are some songs that I did not connect with as much, however lyrically & musically the album’s gold (like its cover). They have delivered and I definitely think it’ll only get better with time.