Entries in Rolling Stone (5)
Master(bate)piece Theater: "Hip-Hop" "journalist" thoughts on Kanye and Jay-Z's Watch For The Throne LP
“There’s songs on there that’s making you go crazy.” - Swizz Beats regarding "Watch the Throne"
"Good Grief" - Me regarding Swizz Beats, Hype Machine
Who isn’t looking forward to “Watch the Throne” (the upcoming collaborative album from Jay-Z and Kanye West that everyone is talking about)? The answer is nobody: we’re all looking forward to it! From sea to shining sea, from elementary schools to nursing homes everybody is thinking of “H.A.M.” (the song) when they are reminded of ham (the food). Children everywhere are being named "Otis" and throne sales have hit an all time high. It’s just a great time for our country and the world. Even better, Jay and Kanye have started calling themselves “The Throne”! Ye-Z (air horn)! The Throne (echo and double air horn)!!
No offense to the filthiest rich rap millionaires ever but I’m not all that excited about the album. “WHY!?!” everyone asks. Because my slate is crammed full of great hip hop and I don’t even know what a slate is (but I do know mine is full). Honestly, I have so much good music spinning that this Throne business hasn’t really cracked my radar. In fact, I didn’t even check for “Otis” until the Game dropped “Uncle Otis” (nice job there the Game, you're like a rap first responder). But don’t get me wrong, I love Jay-Z and Kanye West. I really do, Jay is an extremely talented MC and Kanye is a great producer. They drop good tracks all the time. But let’s be serious for a minute: Jay-Z does a lot of collaboration albums (remember R. Kelly and Linkin Park?) and he ALWAYS WORKS WITH KANYE WEST, so nothing new there. Also, let’s take a look at the pair’s past releases and see if we can guess where this new joint will end up:
So, what’s the point of this post? I don’t even know! It has something to do with everyone (especially non hip hop fans) expecting a masterpiece and declaring perfection from these two when so far they’ve delivered the same mediocre coal from the mediocre mountains for years. I mean, how are so many people so amped about cool-sounding but insubstantial music from millionaires? Especially when the music is about being millionaires? I mean, did you see that making of documentary? Nobody lives like that. I can see how other millionaires might like that, but not me! I’m broke! I’m a zeronaire. “Ah, so you’re hating about money”. Nope, I’m hating about trash music that a couple of big time rappers are selling based on their image and status. Even the first singles have been “good” but not “good”…you know what I mean? I mean, they might be okay in a mix but I’m not pushing play on them more than a few times. Ya dig?
But wait! Let’s see what the media and public are saying about “Watch the Throne”, then maybe we can get some perspective. Well, I see a lot of reasonable people predicting this album to be average. Good for them. But then there's this from Entertainment Weekly:
“Simply put: Throne proves to be a masterpiece. No exaggeration.”
Really? Do you think it’s too soon to say that? Is ‘before the album has been finalized’ too soon? There's more...Actually, hold on, let me back up a bit and start again by checking out the content of our friend Jay’s verse in the song “No Church”, courtesy of Rolling Stone:
“Jay-Z unspools brainy couplets about great thinkers like Socrates, Plato, Jesus, Kanye and himself; Kanye raps about drugs and sex, among other topics.”
Really? Five names that just go together: Socrates, Plato, Jesus, Kanye West, and Jay-Z. It’s a higher level of couplets! They all talked about how rich they are and “drugs and sex, among other topics”. Teach us wise ones. Rolling Stone continues (this time about the single “Otis”):
“Their rhymes are tricky, showoffy stuff, with the two old friends trading lines like a 21st-century Run-DMC.”
Nope. But that’s Rolling Stone for you (a hip hop authority right?). Anyone else have anything to say?
“it's…two dudes talking s--- in an aggressive manner” – NY MAG
That’s more like it. Wait! the WEB SITE Rap Buzz certainly has high expectations for a song they've never heard:
"A song that has got us hyped up here at The Rap Buzz is 'Living so Italian' - as we're originally Italian, this song title is very interesting and we hope Hov and 'Ye rep it right and it sounds as monumental as the Coliseum!"
I think that's the worst song title. But, you know, different strokes for different blogs or something like that. Okay, enough of that. Let's hear from the fans:
“J can't do no wrong in my eyes, perfect life, wife, track and collaborations, keep doing your ting J giving it to us raw so!!"
"Jay nor West can do no wrong in my eyes!!!”
That’s just a good way to look at art! And then this:
“this is hot and "watch the throne" will go platinum in a week :D! I got deluxe version of it already pre-ordered..I just hope jay&jeezy spend my dough wisely..like on a yacht in south of France :D..can't wait for it to drop!”
HOLY CRAP! Really? These fans are nuts.
"Ham was under rated if you ask mee...the song was for everybody on they grind tryna make it happen ..the beat the lyrics from both and subject matter was ridiculous and the craft was unique but i guess not ready for our current audience stuck in lazy land.. why would a hater like a song implementing going hard as a mother (you a hater) lol you dont do ish”
Hating on the haters! I guess I’m stuck in “lazy land” implementing hating! Any other fans?
"Love You Both. Kanye, I’m falling in love with you,,, you’re the voice for everyone fighting to be/stay/are themselves!!!”
What!? These guys are doing more damage to people being themselves than anyone else.
In the end I don’t want Jay or Kanye to change their style at all, I like them. What I do want is for “Watch the Throne” to go on regular spin because it’s so good. I want all these people and predictions to be right. I really want to love this album. I want it to say something, but I doubt it will, and I doubt anyone else will care about it much after about a year. Why? Because I expect the album will be going for mass appeal (and that never wins). So where does that leave us? We the people pay for some rich guys to get richer and to crow about it to our faces! It’s a good investment for the regular folks, it’s inspirational, and thanks for the opportunity to give you money the Throne.
-DagDiligent of the Tortoise General Blog
Rolling Stone writes an article about them being a the new artist to watch, which I have faith in too. They compare them with EPMD and Lupe Fiasco minus the skateboarding, which is pretty accurate.
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