Jay-Z & Kanye West: Watch The Throne Review
Now of course this will be an album I’ll listen to 100 times so there’s a good chance these ratings will change, but here’s a quick review after one listen for anyone wondering..
1. No Church in the Wild – 4.25/5. Very nice intro beat. Jigga’s opening verse is pretty damn tight. Frank Ocean sounding pretty good. Kanye has some SICK ass lines as well.
2. Lift Off – 3.75/5. This is great musically. Beyonce sounding very nice. The music is actually better than any of the rap verses IMO. It can be a hit record.
3. Niggas in Paris – 4.5/5. Interesting beat in the begin. It’s a MONSTER when it drops though. Jigga on his braggadocios shit. Highlight track so far.
4. Otis – 4.25/5. Everyone has heard this by now. I dig it a whole lot now just like I dug it when it came out.
5. Gotta Have It – 4/5. Beat is cool. Kanye & Jigga trading bars and they sound like a duo who been doin this 10+ years. Interesting hook concept (prod by The Neptunes).
6. New Day – 4.25/5. Kanye/RZA/Mike Dean? Sick production credit. Very nice beat as expected. Really liking the instrumentation. LOL at Kanye’s line about white people. Jay-Z verse about his future child(ren) is pretty sick.
7. That’s My Bitch – 4/5 Interesting music. Background vocals by Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), Connie Mitchell (Sneaky Sound System) & Elly Jackson (La Roux). These seems fit to Kanye well. His flow is crisp on it. It’s more musically rich than anything once again. Jay’s verse is very crisp as well. I would compare the beat to “Lift Off” in terms of being musically rich but the verses are better on this.
8. Welcome to the Jungle – 4/5. I was worried about this when I saw Swizz Beats. It’s an interesting beat. Either annoying or cool lol. I like it when it picks up. Again, I dig Jigga’s flow. Kanye comes in nicely again. A bit of trading bars here as well.
9. Who Gon’ Stop Me – 4.5/5. This beat is mothafuckin tight. Really nice sample too. Kanye doing his low muffled voice/flow early on. Again, Jigga’s flow sounding very clean. Thankfully Kanye’s verse back to his regular voice. Oh when the beat switches up, makes it even more of a monster.
10. Murder to Excellence – 4.25/5. I dig this beat. Lovin’ the background sample. Kanye/Jigga touching on some real shit.
11. Made in America – 4.5/5 I really like how Frank Ocean sounds on this. Kanye’s opening verse is dope, very on point with the content/subject matter. Jay-Z’s verse is cool but Ye’s really stands out.
12. Why I Love You – 4.25/5. Good beat. Chorus is hit/miss. Not sure how I feel about it yet. I guess the sample is pretty cool though. Jigga’s opening verse is tight. Jay starts the 2nd verse too, and I recognize the lines from the documentary they released; sick lines. Kanye also comes in, they trade bars in this verse and it adds a sick dimension to the song. In the end, I dig this.
For some reason, I have these in 128 rip (the rest of the album was 256) so some of these may sound better later when better quality leaks.
1. Illest Motherfucker Alive – 4.5/5. Starts at the 3minute mark (just silence before then). This beat is a mothafuckin monster when it drops. This the song from the documentary they previewed with Russell Crowe in the studio. This is very tight. LOL “got staples in my dick, why? fuckin’ centerfolds.” Jay-Z got some sick lines too, “I got 5 more rings than Michael Jordan had.”
2. H.A.M. – 3.75/5. Everyone’s heard it. I still dig the verses and the beat (for the most part). Beat is too busy for my liking but it’s still cool.
3. Primetime – 4/5. No ID on the boards, his beats always have that “Frank Sinatra singing in a bar in the 40s” feel lol. The sample is very cool too. Kanye’s verse is really good, better than Jigga’s.
4. The Joy – 4.25/5. Very happy to be getting a mixed/mastered version of this. Always loved this since it first came out. The sample is beautifully soulful! Good job Pete Rock.
Overall this is a very good and more so than all, consistent release.
IMO, (after only listen) I’d break it down like this:
Best tracks: (4.5+)
Niggas in Paris
Who Gon’ Stop Me
Made In America
Illest Motherfucker Alive
Those 4 slightly stand out to me above the rest.
Great tracks: (4.25)
No Chuch in the Wild
Murder to Excellence
Why I Love You
Good tracks: (4)
Gotta Have It
That’s My Bitch
Welcome to the Jungle
Good, not as good as the rest (anything below a 4)