Jay-Z returns with 4:44 today (June 30), his first album since 2013's Magna Carta Holy Grail and the 13th solo project under the Brooklyn star's expensive yet humble belt. Running at a succinct 10 tracks that are packed with flavorful wordplay and intense storytelling, the new music continues to prove why Jigga has extended way beyond the stereotypical rapper confinements and remains a living legend.
From opening up about the infidelities in his marriage to Beyoncé (which she blatantly discussed on last April's Lemonade) to tackling racism in America and even praising his mother Gloria who came out as lesbian and sneak dissing Kanye West, the artist digs deeper into personal matters than he ever has in recent years. So get into the 25 best lyrics on Jay-Z's 4:44—listed, not ranked—while you stream the album right here.
1. From "Kill Jay Z"
And you know better, nigga, I know you do
But you gotta do better, boy, you owe it to Blue
You had no father, you had the armor
But you got a daughter, gotta get softer
2. From "The Story of O.J."
O.J. like, "I'm not black, I'm O.J." …okay
House nigga, don't fuck with me
I'm a field nigga with shined cutlery
3. From "Smile"
Niggas'll rip your shit off TIDAL just to spite you
Ahhhh, what did I do?
'Cept try to free you
Niggas'll love you but hate you 'cause they can't be you
4. From "Caught Their Eyes"
I survived reading guys like you
I'm surprised y'all think you can disguise y'all truths
I seen eyes wide as they're about to shoot
You can be a hairpin off and you can trigger your Roots
5. From "Kill Jay Z"
You almost went Eric Benét
Let the baddest girl in the world get away
I don't even know what else to say
Nigga, never go Eric Benét!
6. From "Family Feud"
Yeah, I'll fuck up a good thing if you let me
Let me alone, Becky
7. From "Moonlight"
Glorified seat filler, huh?
Stop walkin' around like y'all made Thriller, huh?
Fake Dracos all in the videos
We sure we shoot 'em in my city though
12. From "Legacy"
My stake in Roc Nation should go to you
Leave a piece for your siblings to give to their children too
TIDAL, the champagne, D'USSÉ, I'd like to see
A nice peace-fund ideas from people who look like we
We gon' start a society within a society
13. From "Marcy Me"
Think I just popped up in this bitch like a fetus? Nah
Pregnant pause, give you some second thoughts
There's room on the bandwagon, don't abort
14. From "4:44"
Look, I apologize, often womanize
Took for my child to be born
See through a woman's eyes
Took for these natural twins to believe in miracles
Took me too long for this song
I don't deserve you, I harass you out in Paris
15. From "Family Feud"
Ain't no such thing as an ugly billionaire, I'm cute
Pretty much If anybody gettin' handsome checks, it should be us
16. From "Smile"
Mama had four kids, but she's a lesbian
Had to pretend so long that she's a thespian
Had to hide in the closet, so she medicate
Society shame and the pain was too much to take
Cried tears of joy when you fell in love
Don't matter to me if it's a him or her
17. From "4:44"
Said: "Don't embarrass me," instead of "Be mine"
That was my proposal for us to go steady
That was your 21st birthday, you mature faster than me
I wasn't ready, so I apologize
18. From "4:44"
I never wanted another woman to know
Something about me that you didn't know
I promised, I cried, I couldn't hold
I suck at love, I think I need a do-over
I will be emotionally available if I invited you over
19. From "Bam"
I can't take no threats, I got a set of twins
Those were just the words you'll never hear again
20. From "Kill Jay Z"
Let go your ego over your right shoulder
Your left is sayin', "Finish your breakfast!"
You egged Solange on
Knowin' all along, all you had to say you was wrong
21. From "Smile"
Oh y'all thought I was washed?
I'm at the cleaners
Launderin' dirty money like the Teamsters, huh
22. From "Kill Jay Z"
But you ain't a Saint, this ain't KumbaYe
But you got hurt because you did cool by 'Ye
You gave him 20 million without blinkin'
He gave you 20 minutes on stage, fuck was he thinkin'?
"Fuck wrong with everybody?" is what you sayin'
But if everybody's crazy, you're the one that's insane
23. From "The Story of O.J."
Y'all out here still takin' advances, huh?
Me and my niggas takin' real Chances, uh
Y'all on the 'Gram holdin' money to your ear
There's a disconnect, we don't call that money over here, yeah
24. From "4:44"
I've seen the innocence leave your eyes
I still mourn this death, I apologize for all the stillborns
'Cause I wasn't present, your body wouldn't accept it
25. From "Bam"
Sometimes you need your ego, gotta remind these fools
Who they effin' with, and we got FN's too
Before we had A&R's, we had AR's too
We the only ones really movin' like y'all say y'all do
Below, travel back in time to 2009 where a Blueprint 3-era Jay-Z tells Fuse why he wants hip-hop to "be more conscious":