The Carters are a musical duo consisting of legendary Brooklyn MC JAY-Z & his wife, former Destiny’s Child member & Houston popstar Beyoncé. Their latest albums Lemonade & 4:44 saw them at their most personal, but now they’re closing out the trilogy with a collaborative effort.
The album starts off with “SUMMER”, which is a sex song over a Cool & Dre instrumental that suits the mood fantastically. The next track “APESHIT” is an energetic club banger with an infectious Pharrell beat & Bey’s rapping was a very nice touch. The song “BOSS” talks about success over a triumphant trap beat from D’Mile & Mike Dean while the track “NICE” with Pharrell sees the 3 getting braggadocious over some beautiful keys & rattling hi-hats. The song “713” is a dedication to Beyoncé’s hometown over an instrumental with heavy bass with even some Scott Storch-like keyboards. It makes even more sense that Bey interpolates the classic Dr. Dre tune “Still D.R.E.” in the hook, but that’s really the only part of the song that I’m realistically not crazy about.
The track “FRIENDS” sees the 2 individually dedicating the time to song crew over a gloomy trap beat from Boi-1da & for some reason NAV while the song “HEARD ABOUT US” tells their critics to watch their mouths over a funky beat. The penultimate track “BLACK EFFECT” sees the 2 intelligently talking about being African American over a soulful trap beat & then it finishes perfectly with “LOVEHAPPY”, where the ‘03 Bonnie & Clyde go back & forth with each other about professing their love for each other as well as moving on from the whole Becky incident over a beautiful Eddie & Ernie sample.
I’m well aware that Jigga intentionally gave us this just the day after the new Nas album NASIR & while that is definitely superior, I still thought this was a lovely way to end the trilogy. Given what they’ve been through, the impeccable chemistry between JAY-Z & Beyoncé is a lot more stronger than it’s been in the past. Most of the instrumentals are luscious too & while I do enjoy a handful of trap music, I feel like a few of the beats on here sounded like they were forced to throw in hi-hats when they really didn’t need to