If Lemonade was the accusation album, 4:44 is the apology.
Jay-Z’s new record was released on Thursday night, with fans immediately delving into the lyrics to search for possible responses to wife Beyonce — and they did not come up empty-handed.
In at least three of the tracks, the 47-year-old appears to make a series of revelations that allude to his ‘infidelity’, his clash with Solange Knowles two-years ago, and that his newborn twins had been conceived ‘naturally’, despite speculation he and Beyonce had favoured IVF treatment.
In Kill Jay-Z, addressing himself, he raps ‘You almost went Eric Benét / Let the baddest girl in the world get away.’
Eric Benét famously cheated on then wife Halle Berry.
‘I don’t even know what else to say / N***a, never go Eric Benét / I don’t even know what you woulda done / In the future, other n***s playin’ football with your son.’
Fans were quick to realise the last line referenced fellow rapper Future’s attack on footballer Russell Wilson for being a stepfather to his son, Future Jr.
In the same track, Jay-Z also appears to reference his infamous lift fight with his sister-in-law Solange Knowles at the Met Gala in 2014, admitting it was his fault.
Footage of the pair coming to blows had surfaced at the time, with Solange appearing to lash out at the Holy Grail rapper.
In his new song, Jay-Z raps: ‘You egged Solange on knowin’ all along / All you had to say you was wrong,’ he raps.
He then goes on to say in his track Family Feud: ‘Nobody wins when the family feuds,’ and has even appeared to name-check ‘Becky with the good hair’, whom many believed was Jay-Z’s mistress after Beyonce’s song Sorry that featured on her Lemonade album.
‘Yeah, I’ll f*ck up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky / A man that don’t take care his family can’t be rich,’ he raps.
Beyonce, meanwhile, provides backing vocals on the track.