Despite winning 17 Grammys, Jay-Z has never contended for the top prize of Album of the Year.
Could his new disc “Magna Carta Holy Grail” finally win him that coveted award?
The first reviews for this album, which was released via an app on July 4, are respectful, if not raves.
For Steve Jones (USA Today), “the breadth of his subject matter, which also touches on family, loyalty, spirituality and fame, is matched by his lyrical acuity. His perspective is that of someone who has achieved much but hasn’t lost sight of what brought him to this point. With platinum status guaranteed even before his album goes on sale July 9, he could have just mailed it in. But he stays on top, because he refuses to do anything less than epic.”
Rob Markman (MTV) said, “it all sounds great, but subsequent listens uncover thoughtful commentary and societal observation, lending to the album’s replay value.” And, he thought, “If ‘Magna Carta’ proves anything it’s that no matter how futuristic your music distribution methods becomes, banging beats and choice rhymes will always remain timeless.”
And, as Jeff Rosenthal (Billboard) notes, “Jay’s trying to be a lot of things to all people, as one does when as big as he is. And while it’s unfair to measure Jay against others, we’re living in a world where ‘Yeezus’ has risen, and it feels like Jay’s dipping a toe rather than fully diving in. When Kanye is heaving bombs from across the court, you can’t clap so loud when Jay lobs lay-ups. That’s not to say it’s not good – it is – sometimes you just want to see some sweat.”
Our forum posters are equally jazzed about Jay-Z’s new album with Queen Khia commenting “S/O to Jay-Z for releasing a thoroughly good album” while Tye-Grr said, “I would already start predicting it for AOTY because I imagine the Grammys will eat this up. As it stands, it’s solid, and better than his last solo effort. “
Do you agree with Tye-Grr that “Magna Carta Holy Grail” will contend for Album of the Year?
Vote in our poll below and add your voice to the debate here.