Jay-Z’s New Album Might Not Suck, Thanks to Timbaland

08/24/2009 1:59 PM |

Jay-Z and Timbaland

We’ve been a little unimpressed with what we’ve heard and seen of Jay-Z’s forthcoming album, The Blueprint 3 (out September 11), but two new tracks off the record that came out over the weekend have me feeling slightly less skeptical.

Both are produced by Timbaland, who has provided Jay some of the best beats of his career (“Big Pimpin” anyone?), and they seem to get him out of his funk. The best is “Reminder,” which is classic sci-fi Timbo (the other is embedded after the jump):

Though less immediately gripping than “Reminder,” another of Timbaland’s three tracks off the album, “Off That” with Drake might actually feature better verses from Hov. I especially like the beginning of the second verse, where he raps “They say black vs. white my nigga we off that/ please tell Bill O’Reilly to fall back/ tell Rush Limbaugh to get off my balls/ it’s 2010 not 1864.” Check it out:

7 Comment

  • ok i don’t mean to sound mean but i think you got everything in this article wrong. the reminder beat sounds terrible, but jay’s verses are much better on it than on ‘off-that’. blueprint 3 might not suck, thanks to kanye

  • I don’t mean to be mean either, but really? Part of why I think “Reminder” is a better beat is because it’s really about Timbo, whereas Drake does the chorus on “Off That” and, well, he’s boring. I love those crazy Timbaland beats when he takes some tiny vocal sample then twists and distorts until it sounds like it’s being sung by some sort of space siren (see: “Put You On The Game”), but fits perfectly with his crazy psychedelic electro-pop.

    Part of what bugs me about Jay’s raps on “Reminder” is that part in the second verse when he enumerates all the years he’s dropped albums (lazy!). Meanwhile “Off That” has that amazing part with all the colors: “Got a black president/ got green presidents/ Blueprint’s on my white iPod/ black diamonds in my Jesus piece, my god!”

    Jay’s flow does sound better on “Reminder,” so you’re right in that respect, although that’s probably because the beat is better.

  • Oh, also, isn’t it too early to say whether or not Kanye will save Blueprint 3, since none of the tracks he’s produced sans No I.D. have been released yet? I hope you’re right though (“Heart of the City” is one of my top 3 Jay-Z songs ever).

  • Y’all can agree wiv me dat jay is unargueably de greatest of all time. I believe dis new effort wil never suck, since “the kingdom come” did not. Ride on jigga.

  • “Off That” is spectacular, the best hip-hop dance track I’ve heard this year. Timbo’s chant of “Blueprint 3” at the intro, and Hov’s “Ah” paired with Timbo’s “hey hey” – that’s hot right there. Tim’s “Reminder” and “Venus v. Mars” are also excellent. I like the Neptunes/Pharrell joint as well. Alicia Keys’ vocals are phenomenal. I had high expectations for this album and they have been met. I like this album better than “Blueprint”, which I thought was a bit overrated. Well done Jay, well done.

  • In my book Jay-z can do no wrong. Just the fact that he rose above and beyond poverty and drug selling in da’ hood is an accomplishment in itself. The things he raps about are the things he knows first hand. And never forgets where he comes from. At this point, he is just keeping us entertained because we want more. He has already made it. So going forward he can just have fun and write what makes him happy. if we like it fine. Although he does strive for perfection and has very thick skin he loves the criticism I LOVE YOU JAY-Z (HOVA)

  • Only Hov could rap younger than the rappers around him while showing them all the substance their missing. Blueprint 3 came with a warning label that nobody read; he said it would be experimental. So anyone doubting the new form need only dismantle the album and look at it piece by piece. Timbaland’s beats have been applauded; they don’t carry the album. Jay-Z says, bring it, outsiders’ opinions don’t change his sic charisma, “All rhymers with Alzheimers line up please,
    all mommies with mind freeze please line up please/see if we can kill your amnesia by the time I leave/all mommies I harbour for vouch for me.” He takes jibes at his age by the horns and tells you whose really afflicted by the diseases of the years. “I