The television for “ Apes**t ” was made in the Louvre, including the Carters ’ own selfies in front of the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo ; the placement is one more prize for Jay-Z to boast about in “ Heard About Us. ” But with the Carters and a dance company taking over the Louvre ’ s palatial spaces, the television besides places an unapologetic, physical black presence in a bastion of european culture.
And that has become part of Beyoncé ’ south and Jay-Z ’ south shared stick out : to remember, amid their incontestable even anomalous success, how a lot has been denied to others by systemic racism. The chorus of “ Nice, ” sing by its co-producer Pharrell Williams, is “ I can do anything, ” but the birdcall pour on sarcasm in a track fully of edgy, devious polytonal chords. Jay-Z raps about getting a subpoena while on tour, snickering that he ’ second getting dragged into motor hotel now after “ years of drug trafficking ” in his youth : “ Time to remind me I ’ thousand black again, huh ? ”
Wealth coevals is the best retaliation. In “ Boss, ” Beyoncé reaches down to a low-register howl to sing, “ My great-great-grandchildren already rich/That ’ s a lot of brown children on your Forbes list. ” Cultural memory has a set, besides : The song ’ s finale features a riffing horn section like the brass bands Beyoncé deploy for her remarkable performance this year at Coachella, which celebrated the march bands and drumlines of historically black colleges and universities. Conscious of hip-hop history, in “ 713 ” Beyoncé ’ s chorus harks back to lines from “ still D.R.E., ” a song Jay-Z helped write for Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre : “ We still got love for the streets, ” she declares. And in “ Black Effect, ” Jay-Z promises, “ I ’ molarity good on any M.L.K. Boulevard. ”