Q (UK) - - Q Review Reissues -

Jay was al­ready un­stop­pable but his most co­he­sive al­bum since Rea­son­able Doubt made him un­touch­able: the new king of New York, the undis­puted heavy­weight cham­pion, hip-hop’s Su­per­man, “the Si­na­tra of my day”. Over the course of an all-killer hour with just one guest (Eminem) and no gim­micks, Jay hits his lyri­cal peak as he trum­pets his achieve­ments, trashes his foes (Takeover’s de­mo­li­tion of Nas and Mobb Deep is bru­tal) and gets sen­ti­men­tal about the past. The air of vic­tory is en­hanced by the bom­bas­tic clas­sic-soul fan­fares of new­com­ers Kanye West and Just Blaze. One of hip-hop’s true mas­ter­pieces, this is an im­pe­ri­ally con­fi­dent demon­stra­tion of how it feels to have the world at your feet.

Lis­ten To: Heart Of The City (Ain’t No Love)

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