Yeezus (Kanye West) | 4/5
Press play, and a single distorted note assaults your ears before the beats and Kanye West comes on and spits out his hard-hitting lyrics. With its stark production, brash delivery, abrupt stylistic changes (sometimes within the same song) and lyrical rants, Yeezus is unsettling, even shocking. Back when he released 808s & Heartbreak, West said he wanted to his music to considered as art. With Yeezus, he reinforces his artistic expression, if you concede that art is art as long as the work exemplifies the artist’s definition of his art, and yet allows for interpretation as well. Yes, it’s contradictory. But it is art. Just like how The Village Green Perservation Society or Metal Machine Music was art. He also said this album isn’t geared for radio play. And it’s true. There is nothing commercial about the songs that allows them to fit into any commercial radio playlist. And there are just too many expletives to bleep out, even as he rages against the world. But this is probably the most interesting offering from West since 808. It’s West having fun, zigging when you expect him to zag. It’s West whipping the rug from under your feet and psyching you out. And it’s great. All you need to do is roll with the punches.