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New Kanye West album ‘worth the hype’

Fourteen-time Grammy Award winning rapper/producer Kanye West will deliver one of the most anticipated albums of 2010 on Monday, Nov. 22. But is the album really worth the hype? Besides stacking the title with an unnecessary adjective or two, the answer is an overwhelming, emphatic yes. Bias aside, it is nearly impossible to not be even a little impressed with the masterful production and lyrical content delivered on this album.

After a near career-ending incident involving country starlet Taylor Swift one year ago, West went into self-imposed exile, rarely being seen or heard from by the media. After lackluster reviews of his previous album, 808’s & Heartbreak, West returned to his roots with straight hip-hop on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. West wastes no time delivering his trademark witty rhymes over an unusual but infectious beat which samples choir chorus vocals. West reminisces over the pain he’s felt over the past year, “The plan was to drink until the pain’s over. But what’s worse, the pain or the hangover,” yet on the same track delivers comedic lines such as, “Fresh air rollin’ through the windows, too many Urkels on ya team that’s why y’all win slow.”

While there is a fair amount of humor on the album, the intent of this LP is to remind the rap community that Mr. West has not lost any amount of musical prowess; if anything, he has just gotten better. West’s creativity outshines any other hip-hop CD out today because of the simple fact that it sounds like nothing else on the market. West comes to terms with the fact that he is viewed unfavorably by most of the public with songs such as “Monster,” where he proclaims, “Yeah my eye’s more red than the devil’s is, I do the rap and the track, triple-double no assist.” No song sounds similar to any other on the album. On two songs, auto tune is used in a way never seen before. Rather than to enhance his singing ability, he uses it while rapping on more somber songs such as “Hell of a Life” and “Lost in the World” to convey raw emotions. The stressed vocals plus a vocoded effect add an eerie sense of dread to the songs, further helping West convey his pain to the listener.

Twisted Fantasy is not without its share of radio anthems that are sure to tear up the airwaves. The first single, “POWER,” is a verbal assault on those who have bashed West, set to a club-banging beat which samples King Crimson’s “21st Century Schizoid Man,” “See Me Now,” which features Beyonce, and “All of the Lights,” which features a chorus of musical juggernauts including Kid Cudi, Ryan Leslie, John Legend, The-Dream, Tony Williams, Charlie Wilson, Elly Jackson of La Roux, Alicia Keys, Fergie and Elton John.

In My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Kanye West crafts beats with classical instruments, choir choruses, and collaborations with relatively unknown artists (acts such as indie artist Bon Iver are featured on more than one track). With every punchline and rhyme, West reminds the public why he is considered one of the greatest artists of this generation. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is a hip-hop masterpiece with flawless production, astounding feature artists, and songs with astounding replay value. With this album, Mr. West shows that he is not constrained by the musical limitations set by manufactured industry artists that are played to death on the radio. The creativity shown on this album is unlike anything seen before on a hip-hop record. It is definitely a must have for all who appreciate good music.

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  • D

    Dylan PitmanJan 18, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    His music is not good…

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New Kanye West album ‘worth the hype’