The Black Album

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The Black Album Image
Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 19 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 173 Ratings

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  • Summary: The hugely successful Brooklyn rapper worked with an A-list of producers (including Just Blaze, Kanye West, Aqua, Eminem, Rick Rubin and The Neptunes) on what he has stated will be the final release of his career. (Sure it will.)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Mojo
    100
    A magnificent record. [Jan 2004, p.104]
  2. There are better storytellers, there are better battle rappers, there are undoubtedly rhymers with more on their minds. But there isn't a better MC around, if you're talking about the art of sheer mic domination.
  3. The Black Album stands up alongside Reasonable Doubt and The Blueprint as Z's most ambitious work.
  4. While it probably won't be remembered as his best album, The Black Album is his most personal to date and features some of his most compelling writing.
  5. Q Magazine
    80
    Excellent, although not quite the epoch-defining triumph its hype suggested it might be. [Jan 2004, p.108]
  6. Impresses on the same level as the best of his career.
  7. For all the dark wordplay, the album is an aural equivalent of that old American favourite, the schmaltzy biopic.

See all 19 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 58
  2. Negative: 2 out of 58
  1. Aug 22, 2011
    10
    This album is amazing. This is still my favorite rap album to date and is one of the best I've ever heard. Jay Z was trying to retire with aThis album is amazing. This is still my favorite rap album to date and is one of the best I've ever heard. Jay Z was trying to retire with a bang and he did just that. This is Jay Z's best album. The production was amazing, the lyrics were on point and we heard every jay Z. Classic and new. Expand
  2. JasonC
    Feb 16, 2004
    10
    Hands down best ever! Those who think its wack don't even listen carefully to the track. Hov is the realest shit there is. Thats why Hands down best ever! Those who think its wack don't even listen carefully to the track. Hov is the realest shit there is. Thats why most people give it a good rating. Expand
  3. DaniG
    Jun 24, 2004
    10
    very best jigga album up to date! hope and pray it's not really his last one. hip hop needs Jay-Z.. "If you can't respect that, very best jigga album up to date! hope and pray it's not really his last one. hip hop needs Jay-Z.. "If you can't respect that, your whole perspective is whack" Expand
  4. CeCeT
    Mar 2, 2004
    9
    I got 99 problems but a Bi### ain't one. That song was on point. I was feeling that and the cd is hott...
  5. Sep 11, 2013
    9
    Once again, Jay-Z showed us that he's one of the greatest rappers alive. After "Reasonable Doubt" and "The Blueprint", comes a stunning albumOnce again, Jay-Z showed us that he's one of the greatest rappers alive. After "Reasonable Doubt" and "The Blueprint", comes a stunning album called "The Black Album". We seen him ruling the charts with "Dirt
    Off Your Shoulder" and "99 Problems" but you will see way much amazing songs in this masterpiece.
    Expand
  6. Aug 2, 2016
    8
    Jay Z's masterpiece and arguably the best hip hop album of the first decade of the 21st century. Mixing razor sharp lyrics with an armory ofJay Z's masterpiece and arguably the best hip hop album of the first decade of the 21st century. Mixing razor sharp lyrics with an armory of top class tunes to back things up, this is one of those records that transcends genres and I would think has an appeal to music lovers in general, regardless of preference. While hip hop can sometimes date badly due to either production or lyrical content too focused on the immediate present, pretty much all of The Black Album sounds fresh and vibrant today. "Dirt Off Your Shoulder", "Moment of Clarity" and "Lucifer" are all instant classics of the genre. Then of course we have the culturally and hugely socially significant track "99 Problems". While we're on this particular track, check out Danger Mouse's remix with The Beatles "Helter Skelter" - equally as good as either of the original songs. Brave and brilliant, pushing the boundaries while being universally appealing, I've yet to come across a better or more enjoyable album from this genre. Expand
  7. TonyG
    Nov 24, 2003
    0
    The "whack" Album.

See all 58 User Reviews