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20 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2013

10

Jay Z, 'Magna Carta . . . Holy Grail'


Jay-Z, Magna Carta Holy Grail
Courtesy of Roc-A-Fella Records
10/20

Jay Z rates his latest effort his sixth-best ever – dead center, halfway between transcendent classics (Reasonable Doubt) and time-stamped missteps (Kingdom Come). That's spot-on. The legendary MC explored of-the-moment sounds, textures and tempos in ways only he could – see the proper noun stop-and-repeat hook on "Tom Ford" and the spacey, WorldStar-primed "FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt." Even on a bit of an off day, Jay is still plenty impressive.

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