Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

West holds his own, thematically and lyrically. Twisted Fantasy is dark, moody and introspective, a sort of meeting-point for the different facets of his character revealed since 2003’s College Dropout. And these multiple personas are explored, with few exceptions, through sharp, clever rhymes.

For one, there’s the Kanye we first met and fell in love with; he’s conscious of social and racial politics, frustrated with being a black man in today’s America. This is West at his best; smart, witty, empowered, with rhymes like: “Face it, Jerome get more time than Brandon/And at the airport they check all through my bag and tell me that it’s random” and “I treat the cash the way the government treats AIDS/I won’t be satisfied till all my niggas get it/Get it?”

Still, he’s often self-indulgent and hedonistic, the Kanye the public quickly grew to despise.  References to jewelry, fashion and women are abundant, and obnoxious, with rhymes like: “My furs is Mongolian/My ice brought the goalies in/Now I embody every characteristic of the egotistic” and “I admit it, my first watch was a Fossil/Now I’m in the Louvre, lookin’ for fossils.”

But it isn’t all platinum chains and supermodels; West is also gloomy and paranoid, much like he was on his last record, 2008’s 808s & Heartbreak. On “So Appalled,” he and Jay-Z and Pusha T and Prynce Cy Hi and Swizz Beatz and RZA assert that “the shit is fuckin’ ridiculous,” the shit in question being “champagne wishes, 30 white bitches”; “five-star dishes, different exotic fishes”; “cars for the misses, furs for the mistress.” Typical rapper stuff, but they collectively seem to be wondering if it’s worth it and shaking their heads inwardly, rather than boasting. The sentiment is reminiscent of 808s & Heartbreak’s “Welcome To Heartbreak,” where West sings: “My friend showed me pictures of his kids/And all I could show him was pictures of my cribs/He said his daughter got a brand-new report card/And all I got was a brand-new sports car.”

Mostly, though, West is the guy who has a million ways to say “kiss my ass.” For instance, “Kiss and hug my ass/X and Os”; “My presence is a present, kiss my ass”; “Tell ‘em Yeezy said they can kiss my whole ass/More specifically, they can kiss my asshole.” This is Kanye the jerk, the petulant egotist.

But he says it best himself: “Hard to be humble when you stuntin’ on a jumbotron.” TC mark


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  • http://www.adamhump.com adam

    been listening to this on repeat

    caught up in this kanye moment

    feel sorry for girls' ep

    BNM but drowned

    in the 10.0 noise

  • http://twitter.com/rislynsey christopher lynsey

    This album gives me hope.

  • kumquatparadise

    well put

  • entelleckt

    You have a very entertaining to read writing style. Great review.

    Michael Wyatt | Entelleckt
    Cee-Lo + Lupe + Andre 3000 = Me

  • http://twitter.com/MollyWest12th Molly Oswaks

    Really enjoyed this.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mdkmdk Michael Kramer

    went out and bought this album.

    after 20+ listens i've decided that there are no bad songs on the album, just songs that haven't grown on me yet.

  • KILLbill


  • Jtprius510

    In all my years of reading fiction, watching movies and listening to rap music, I don't think any rapper has ever been able to tell a story everyone can relate to. West is the first to tell me a story entirely in verse about a man's paranoid battle against his narcissistic vanities and insecurities. West has five albums now. This one is definitely the best out of all five of them. With this album, comes a 34 minute long short film and a poster that includes all five covers of this album, that includes the other four covers besides the one on your copy. So you don't have to buy all five to have all of the covers. This is West under the influence of European art. This is West crying artistically. Listeners can definitely feel this emotion by the last three minutes of the 9th track Runaway. I think that track was designed to make listeners feel this emotion. Being the 9th track, it is one out of the last four songs of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. The last five songs of 808's and Heartbreaks made me feel the same way. West has been consistent in the way he hits his listeners with the last half of his last two albums. West tells cohessive stories with clear beginnings and endings. And I haven't noticed it so much since his last two albums. In this way of consistent story telling, I feel that West has graduated once again, this time from being a rapper, to being a director, artist and author.

  • Guest

    ‘have you ever had sex with a pharoah, put your pussy in the sarcophagus, now she’s claiming that i bruise her oesaphagus’

    just, lovely.

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