• Phrenology Turns 20

    11 days ago - By Stereogum

    “You gotta believe, I think like a artist/ But my bills through the roof can't do numbers like the Roots.” That was Jay-Z, freestyling over the beat from 50 Cent's “If I Can't,” on 2003's The S. Carter Collection , a great mixtape released to promote a line of Reebok sneakers. Jay had made points like that one before - explaining, over and over, that the pressures of stardom kept him from expressing his true depth. It's the same point that Jay made on The Black Album a few months later, when he claimed that if skills sold, truth be told, he'd probably be lyrically Talib Kweli. But I always...
    Read more ...