Kingdom Come is the ninth studio album by American rapper Jay Z. It was released on November 21, 2006. It was considered a "comeback album" for the established rapper, as 2003's The Black Album was slated to be his final release. Kingdom Come was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album, losing to Kanye West's Graduation at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards. The album received generally positive reviews and was a commercial success, selling about 680,000 copies in its first week, making it Jay Z's highest selling album within a one-week period. Many of the CD pressings were released in a translucent red jewel case.
Despite its commercial success and positive reviews, Jay-Z considers Kingdom Come to be his worst album, based on a ranking of all of his studio albums that he gave in 2013.
Kingdom Come was the first Jay Z album released since 2003's The Black Album, which had been widely hyped as Jay Z's "retirement" album. The video for that album's hit single "99 Problems" had ended with Jay Z going down in a hail of gunfire. Jay Z stated in interviews that that scene represented the "death" of Jay Z and the "rebirth" of Shawn Carter. Because of this, Jay Z had originally planned to release Kingdom Come under his real name of Shawn Carter, but decided in the end to release it under his more-famous stage name Jay Z. The album's second single, "Lost One" (produced by Dr. Dre) addresses Jay's split with Roc-A-Fella co-founder Damon Dash, the death of his nephew, and supposedly his relationship with singer Beyoncé.
Past collaborators Kanye West and particularly Just Blaze made significant contributions to the album's production. This is the first time Dr. Dre has played a substantial role in a Jay Z album, as he produced four beats and mixed every song on the album. Relatively unknown newcomers B-Money, Syience, and DJ Khalil also contributed to the album's production, as well as Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin. Kingdom Come's opening track "The Prelude" features additional vocals from Pain in da Ass who featured on some of Jay Z's earlier album introductions, impersonating characters from films such as Scarface, Goodfellas, and Carlito's Way.
Baseball star Carl Crawford uses "Dig a Hole" as one of his entrance songs when he comes up to bat. Fox used an instrumental version of "Oh My God" in a promo leading up to the 6th season premiere of 24. The title track "Kingdom Come" was not released as an official single but still received high enough digital sales in the U.S. to peak at #98 on the Billboard Hot 100, and #99 on the Pop 100. The Dr. Dre's produced track "Minority Report" received a MTV video. It was dedicated to the victims of Katrina.
"Lost One" featuring an guest appearances from Chrisette Michele, was the album's second single, released on December 2006. It was nowhere near as successful as the previous single, only peaking at number 58 on the US Billboard Hot 100. However, it was somewhat successful on the Hot Rap Tracks, peaking at number 10.
The album's third single, "30 Something" was released on January 8, 2007. It also performed moderately on the US Rap charts, peaking at number 13. However, it was a commercial failure on the Hot 100, not even charting there; instead, on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles at number 7.
The Beyoncé-assisted track "Hollywood", was released as the fourth and final single from Kingdom Come on January 23, 2007. It was slightly more successful than the previous single on the Hot 100, reaching a peak of 99. However, on the US Hot Rap Tracks and hip hop charts, it was less successful, reaching a peak of only 21 and 56, respectively.
Kingdom Come opened up to generally positive reviews. It currently holds an average score of 67/100 on the website aggregator Metacritic. Andy Kellman of AllMusic wrote: "...the album is a display of complacency and retreads — a gratuitous, easily resistible victory lap — that very slightly upgrades the relative worth of The Blueprint²."Entertainment Weekly wrote: "Four duds out of 14 tracks isn't a fireable offense. But shouldn't the corner-office mogul demand more of his top earner?"
The album was a commercial success, with 680,000 copies sold in its first week of release. This also made it Jay-Z's highest selling album within one week. The album debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200. As of December 14, 2006, the album has been certified double platinum in the United States.
A limited edition version of the vinyl record was only released in the UK and Ireland. It features not only the bonus track "44 Fours", but also a live concert of Jay-Z in Britain and the making and behind the scenes footage of several videos. There was also a limited special edition released in the U.S. that was available as the original explicit and an edited or clean version. This version contained the original album, and a bonus DVD with concert footage. It came packaged in a slip case, with a booklet that contained an exclusive cover.