The Blueprint (Bonus Tracks, Explicit)
by Jay Z
Released: Sep 2001
Label: Roc-A-Fella / Def Jam
Blueprint marked Jigga's return to boom-bap formalism, but rarely has a retreat sounded so enticing. Chipmunk soul beats provided by newcomers Kanye West and Just Blaze made yesterday's swagger seem like tomorrow's sound, while the dearth of guest spots and club bangers allowed Jay to focus on Jay. There are at least three classics here, and the album is listenable from front to back. You could argue that this was a high water mark for the B-K vet.