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The Big Picture

  • Reviewed by Andrea Bailey Willits Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2009 14 Jul
The Big Picture
Style: Jay-Z's smooth rap delivery meets the warblings of John Legend Top tracks: "U Ready," "Legend," "Fantasy"

In a nutshell: At first, it's hard to take Grammy-nominated Da' T.R.U.T.H. seriously when he deals out lines like, "Ever since I was 5, riding the Big Wheel, I knew that Christ was kind of a big deal"("U Ready"). But by the end of his sonically impeccable fourth release, you realize every flashback, every lyric, every mini-sermon is as intentional as the crisp beats, radiant keys and soulful background vocals lent by veterans like Kirk Franklin. While he again launches into eyebrow-raising territory with "Tree to Tree," dramatically imploring Eve not to eat from the tree in the Garden of Eden, his straightforward gospel rendering and appealing vocals carry the record far beyond its questionable moments. The rapper's rare listen-ability stamps this ebullient disc a hit.

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