Kanye West / My Beautiful Dark Twisted.. / Def Jam
Two years ago, a Rolling Stone writer stated Kanye West likes the sound of his own whimper. Rubbing off the sentimental shtick, the Chicago hip hop artist has fallen in love (yet again) with his growl. What makes My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy an imposing release is not how Mr. West has confronted an ego bigger than Pac-Man’s appetite for yellow dots. What allures is the construction of the fifth studio album; how it spins like a record, with one outburst warming the throne for the next while being fondled by an elaborate score.
An antonym to past material, Fantasy throws the noble production of Late Registration and the venomous mouth behind The College Dropout into a bathroom stall and turns the lights off. “Why you standing there with your face screwed up? / Don’t leave while your hot, that’s how Mase screwed up,” proclaims West on the soul-driven “Devil In A New Dress”. The conflict between genders is a reoccurring theme, but it compliments the rapper’s intent to preach about the struggles a modern citizen faces. Tirades about life handing you poisonous lemons and being able to push on (“Power”, “Gorgeous”) play pick n’ roll to perfection with West’s copyrighted anthems burning with hate and audacity (“Monster”, “So Appalled”).
The round table of guests and crusades where the music tries to find it’s vocal chords could have been altered, but instead, get overshadowed. Fantasy’s production parades like a lovable class clown while stretching the rules of hip hop and pop music until they orgasm into a vulnerable state. As an artist, Kanye West may have painted his Mona Lisa. As a man, he’s living in the 21st century and if you haven’t noticed by now, he’s doing something mean to it.
Download: “Dark Fantasy”, “Monster” “All Of The Lights”
[Find more album reviews plus news updates and videos on Facebook]