In some ways I feel this type of shameless pandering on behalf of two normally grounded and level headed dudes is responsible for the slow and steady decline of Shawn Carter. Why did Jay lose his hunger after The Black Album solidified his standing atop Rap? I keep thinking back to when he dropped "Super Ugly" for the first time on Hot 97. Angie and Flex lost their minds. They wanted the moment to be the definitive death of Nas and a watershed Hip Hop moment as they jocked Jay-Z in studio. They immediately held a city wide radio poll for listeners to vote for who won the battle. It wasn't Jay-Z. Peep 4:30 where Ciph asks Jay an actual question in "Why revive the Blueprint franchise?" and Jay responds with utter jibberish.
Maybe more critical handling, sober thoughts and tough questions would result in a focused Jay rapping with a chip on his shoulder. The more I listen to the record and consider how the so-sad-it's-hard-for-me-to-listen-to "Young Forever" made it past mixing and mastering the more it feels like Jay's traded in the Dames for Yes Men awed to be in his rarefied presence. In my opinion the butt fucking and reach arounds exchanged regularly by Jay-Z and Hot 97 need to stop. Ever since that immortal Summer Jam the DJs and personalities on the station haven't been afraid to loudly proclaim their loyalty and their airwaves to Jay and he's returned the favor by making his version of "Dreams of fuckin an R&B Bitch" featuring Mister Cee, Funkmaster Flex and Angie Martinez in what was supposed to be a Eulogy for Autotune. In doing so, he slept through No IDs vicious beat and ruined what could of been the street anthem of the summer in a pathetic grab for radio dominance. We might have an intervention on our hands.