He titled it “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.” I concur. Kanye’s latest album is just as he describes it — beautiful, dark, twisted, and a fantastic fantasy that pushes us past the limit of what we know to be music. Love or hate him. There is no one even close to being on his level of creativity. Denying that is simply foolish.
Forget the controversies. Forget his tweets. Forget him. Take his self-promoting persona out of the equation and focus solely on the music — Kanye West is the best rapper. No one has ever done what Kanye West does. He’s a trendsetter who is single-handedly taking his genre wherever he’s going.
The anticipation started when it was rumored that West was working on his next album. I wondered what he would do to push the envelope. Then, the first single, “Power,” dropped, and it was clear that he was working on something special. “Power” is aggressive and boasts one of the most ridiculous beats ever.
He then unveiled his next single, “Runaway” at this year’s Video Music Awards. In the song, West seems to take responsibility for his actions and even seems to admit acting like a “douche bag.” Next thing you know everyone is singing along and toasting to douche bags.
Finally, the wait is over and the album is here. West kicks things off with the track “Dark Fantasy,” which features a beautiful chorus of voices accompanied by piano and strings before being flipped into a steady, thumping beat that provides the perfect canvas for West’s show-stopping lyrics like, “too many Urkels on your team that’s why your wins low.”
The next track “Gorgeous” features Raekwon and Kid Cudi and is driven by a wailing electric guitar, which shows how West draws from any device or instrument to create his amazing beats.
One of the best tracks on the album is “All of the Lights.” The track before is a beautiful instrumental that leads into the song. Before Rihanna’s voice laces the hook, she is led by some trumpets that play triumphantly throughout the song. This one will stand out as a fan favorite.
“Devil in a New Dress” contains a sample of the Smokey Robinson song, “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.” It captures West’s appreciation of classic jams, which he transforms into a production all his own. It is very reminiscent of the early style he displayed in “College Dropout.”
The rest of the album maintains the quality of the previous tracks. “Runaway,” “Blame Game,” featuring John Legend, “Lost in the World,” featuring Bon Iver, and “Who Will Survive in America” cement this album as a perfect creation by a musical genius.
After listening to a lot of this year’s most celebrated hip-hop albums including Drake, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z, Kid Cudi, and Eminem, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” is the undisputed champion.