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- Hailey Bieber denies shading Selena Gomez with ‘I’ll Kill You’ Instagram post Wednesday 7:46 PM
- Trump signed an ego tweet sheet for Tomi Lahren–and it features conspiracy theorists Wednesday 6:59 PM
- Attorneys say ICE deleted evidence pertaining to transgender asylum seeker’s death Wednesday 6:24 PM
- Everything you need to know about VSCO filter codes Wednesday 6:17 PM
- Are users prepared to pay for Gmail storage space? Wednesday 6:09 PM
- Facebook pledges $1 billion to fight housing crisis it helped create Wednesday 5:16 PM
- Lizzo officially credits ‘DNA test’ tweet writer on ‘Truth Hurts’ Wednesday 4:50 PM
- Pornhub takes down videos secretly filmed in a college women’s locker room Wednesday 4:15 PM
- Google Maps on iPhone now shows you speed traps Wednesday 3:47 PM
- Here’s why you’re seeing ‘rise and shine’ all over social media Wednesday 3:45 PM
- AOC grills Zuckerberg over false political ads on Facebook Wednesday 3:27 PM
- Fox News promotes pro-faith, anti-antifa film ‘The Reliant’ Wednesday 3:17 PM
- Cardi B to star in ‘Fast & Furious 9’ Wednesday 3:12 PM
- AOC on opening her DMs: ‘By this morning, it was trash’ Wednesday 2:26 PM
Jay Z has lost his jumper.
That’s my immediate takeaway following Tuesday night’s landing of the Jay-featuring Pusha T single “Drug Dealers Anonymous” as a Tidal exclusive. The track is a signal-boosting promotional tweet targeted toward a graying user base of Reasonable Doubt heads gathered around the aux cord.
It’s fuckboi catnip, in other words: Hyper-masculine groveling for fans who like to type words like “murdered” to describe their favorite music.
It finds the two rappers sniveling about past drug-dealing exploits while simultaneously pledging anonymity to the O.G.s who helped them ditch the lifestyle. This is soft terrain for hip-hop—harrowing raps about socioeconomic inequality and desperate circumstances that compel and fear—but unfortunately for both Jay Z and Pusha, their high school football hero days are long gone. For Pusha, that would be 2006’s Hell Hath No Fury, a cocaine epic that provided delirious sweats; and for Jay, it’s a pinnacle he hasn’t truly hiked to since the two DJ Premier cuts from 1997’s In My Lifetime, Vol. 1.
Of course, Jay keeps trying. The film American Gangster inspired a 2007 professional reboot by the same name that dealt with his ties to the trade. His best work this century—songs like “Never Change,” “Guess Who’s Back,” and “What We Do”—gets watery-eyed about reckless youth. But here, it’s as if Jay is freestyling between Google Calendar appointments.
Not only does he make the mistake of sampling 23-year-old conservative pundit upstart Tomi Lahren (thereby lifting her profile beyond Facebook hardliners clinging to talking points), Jay offers a number of cringe-worthy pivots:
- Uselessly reciting the chorus to 1999 BG hit “Bling Bling.”
- Shouting out his attorneys and asserting that his success stems from their handy paperwork which is such an old man position to take.
- Rapping about Google not once, but twice. Then dapping technocrats everywhere with nods to…
- Uber’s rumored autonomous, driver-less cars…
- … and the joys of typing on a smartphone.
- Dropping a “Damn, Daniel” reference as his kicker.
Hey at least his “All the Way Up” remix was pretty cool.
Ramon Ramirez is the news director, and formerly the Dot's entertainment editor and evening editor. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, Grantland, Washington City Paper, Austin American-Statesman, and Austin Monitor.