Artist: Jay-Z
Album: The Blueprint 3
Exec. Producer: Shawn Carter & Kanye West
Release Date: September 11, 2009

The Blueprint 3 is Jay-z's third album since "retirement". The first single "D.O.A." comes right on time as the use of auto tuning has taken the music scene by storm. The album has solid production; we should expect nothing less. It is also evident that Jay-Z still has lyrical skills and a undeniable smooth flow. His lyrics have matured.

What is a little disappointing are the eleven tracks featuring other artists. Not because the tracks are bad but because they feature other artists. It would have been a classic if there were maybe two or three tracks that had collaborations. But eleven makes it more of a variety album.

It is obvious that Jay-Z is trying to the keep the younger listening audience interested with tracks like the second single "Run This Town" featuring Rhianna and Kanye West or "Real As It Gets" featuring Young Jeezy. These songs are some of the weaker tracks on the album. "Empire State of Mind" featuring Alicia Keys, "Already Home" featuring Kid Cudi (fresh new voice) and "Thank You" are among the strongest; these songs have a Reasonable Doubt feel while others remind you of Kingdom Come.

Given the state of today's hip-hop scene this album is one of the better albums of the year. The Blueprint 3 is worthy of purchase and will definitely be in heavy rotation among fans.


SonicAmp Rating: 7/10