Monday, November 29, 2010

Music Monday: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West (Album Review)

I love Kanye West.  There is something about his (usually) unapologetic narcissistic demeanor that I find fascinating.  You get the impression that he completely believes that he's the best thing to ever happen to the rap game.  And, in many ways, this is true.  Whether its delivering stinging one liners in his rhymes or producing infectious beats, few can match West's artistic flair.

            With his latest release, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Kanye West once again showcases his expansive musical creativity.  Lyrically, it is equal parts vulnerable and boastful.  On tracks like Blame Game West laments the end of a relationship stating, “Anything but us is who we are/ Disguising ourselves as secret lovers/ we've become public enemies/we walk away like strangers in the street/gone for eternity.” On other songs he taps into a completely different side of himself to deliver cocky anthems that lash out against his critics.  Power is a giant middle finger set to music as he celebrates his talents and rails against those who have opposed him ( Saturday Night Live is targeted).  With the single Runaway West finds a balance between the two—acknowledging his imperfections while remaining the boastful rapper people love to hate. By now, toasting to the “douchebags, a**holes, and scumbags” has become to rallying cry of the defiant and misunderstood.

            Musically, Twisted Fantasy is breathtaking and gorgeous.  From a production standpoint, West outdid himself selecting music that heightens the quality of his songs.  The opening notes of Lost in the World are beautifully somber while Monster has an intensity that matches the lyrical content perfectly.  A crooner from the Motown era could easily sing over the retro sounds of Devil In a New Dress.  Simply put, Twisted Fantasy is musical art. Even without words, each song can take listeners on a journey.
            Even if you're not a Kanye West fan, I would recommend giving My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy a listen.  Mr. West offers a non-conventional album that is an interesting departure from the norm of hip-hop.  In a time where music can sound nauseatingly similar, it's nice to have artists who approach their music with a, “whatever I wanna do, gosh it's cool now” type attitude.

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  1. Good Review!

    Am I the only one that really likes "Hell of a game"? The usual tracks people mention are always "Blame Game", "Runaway" and of course Power which has been the topic of discussion for a while (along with it's remix [rather remake] by Swizz Beats)

    I mean I think you already alluded to any point I would make. Simply put MBDTF is an artistic masterpiece that you have to respect regardless of your feelings towards Kanye West as a person. He maybe a jack@$$ but he's a jack@$$ that can write lol.

  2. I had to take another listen--you have a point. Hell of a Life IS pretty catchy. Do you know what he sampled in the chorus? Smething about it sounds SO familiar.

    "He maybe a jack@$$ but he's a jack@$$ that can write lol." Yup!!! Completely agree.

  3. I seriously fell in love with this album. I didnt expect much from it to be honest. I thought the direction he was going in wasn't something that would suit my tastes. I mean I loved College Dropout and before this dropped I kept saying I was the old 'Ye back. But after listening to this album Im hooked. My favorite song has to be by far "All of The Lights". I dont like Ye much as a person but I definitely respect his music.