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Jay-Z announces imminent new album; one-ups Kanye

Kanye West’s Yeezus might not even be officially released yet (just like the baby, it slipped out ahead of schedule over the week), but that hasn’t stopped regular offsider Jay Z from stealing some of the spotlight. The Roc Nation head has announced that four years on from his last solo record, he’s coming back with a new album next month.

Titled Magna Carta Holy Grail, Jay-Z’s latest was announced via a three-minute commercial aired during the June 16 NBA finals. Just like Kanye, Jay Z’s brought a star-studded list of collaborators onboard his long-awaited return: Pharrell Williams, Swizz Beatz, Timbaland and Rick Rubin can all be seen hanging with Jay-Z in the studio in the video (below), while Drake, Nas, Justin Timberlake and The-Dream have all also been linked to the record. As for themes? According to Jay-Z, “The album is about, like this duality of how do you navigate through this whole thing, through success, through failures, through all this and remain yourself.”

While Magna Carta Holy Grail’s lined up a roll-call of rap’s biggest names, it’s Yeezus that boasts the electronic heavyweights. As the much-publicised album leak revealed, Daft Punk are there with production credits on both four tracks, alongside Parisian techno gun Gesaffelstein, bass innovator Hudson Mohakwe and R&B hero Frank Ocean. Magna Carta Holy Grail gets a general release on July 7; but thanks to what was no doubt a very lucrative deal for Jay-Z, Samsung Galaxy users will be able to wrap their ears around it from July 4.