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AUDIO: Jay-Z – Kill Jay Z

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Ahead of the release of 4:44, hyphen fans everywhere celebrated the return of “Jay-Z,” the stylization that Sean Carter used from roughly 1997 until 2013, when he dropped the punctuation to become simply “Jay Z.” The fact that the first new song by the renewed Jay-Z is titled “Kill Jay Z,” with no hyphen, is either a typographical error or pointed subtext. Is he killing off the version of himself from the last four years, the one that inspired the songs of betrayal on Beyonce’s Lemonade? “It’s really about the ego,” Jay said in an iHeart Radio interview that accompanied the premiere of the album. “It’s about killing off the ego, so we can have this conversation in a place of vulnerability and honesty.”
“Kill Jay Z” samples the Alan Parson Project’s 1977 soft-rock hit “Don’t Let It Show,” with Dave Townsend’s skipping, stuttering voice repeating the words “They say I’m to blame” throughout the track. In one long, uninterrupted verse, Jay-Z zeroes in on several of the most significant conflicts in his life. He mentions the childhood incident in which he shot his own brother, memorialized in the 1997 track “You Must Love Me” and the 1999 stabbing of producer Lance “Un” Rivera that became his biggest scrape with the law as a celebrity. Download and enjoy below.

DOWNLOAD AUDIO: Jay-Z – Kill Jay Z HERE

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