Kanye West - Ye

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acroamor
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Kanye West - Ye

Postby acroamor » Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:22 pm

On my first listen right now. Seems like he still hasn’t shaken his Yeezus/TLOP habit of mixing great lines with horrible ones. Production solid.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby PlasticRam » Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:44 pm

Not crazy about this album. Lyrically pretty weak and production is okay I guess.
I feel like that

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Nassim » Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:03 pm

The first 2 and a half minute are so bad that I started missing Lift Yourself, but the last minute is pretty cool.
Most of the album is good, with terrible ideas or rapping sparkled on top, and well, he's done most of it better before.
The only exception is Ghost Town, which on first listen is the highlight of the album, on big part for not really sounding like any of his other songs. "I put my hand on the stove to see if I still bleed" is a pretty dumb lyrics though.

Wouldn't be surprised if it beat TLoP and 808s on Metacritic but didn't fare much on the EOY lists.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Listyguy » Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:07 pm

Not great, but certainly better than The Life of Pablo. "Yikes" is my favorite track. As always, there are some truly God-awful lyrics, but that's to be expected unfortunately.

Also, the cover art is horrendous.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby BleuPanda » Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:28 pm

Listyguy wrote:Also, the cover art is horrendous.



At this point, I'd be disappointed if it wasn't.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby FrankLotion » Sat Jun 02, 2018 5:15 am

Well, I guess luckily it's pretty short. I've been able to listen to this a couple times today, it's really frustrating that I can admire some of the themes he's working towards here while overall still finding it really clumsy and cringe-inducing. Admittedly this grew on me a little more the second time I gave it a listen but nothing sticks with me immediately the way even his "weaker" albums do. I'm getting a really sad feeling like this might be the start of the phase that a lot of great artists eventually devolve into where their new music is only passable.

Maybe I'm just overreacting here, I'll always love Kanye and I'm really happy he is taking a step back to work on his mental health these days and channel that in his music. Either way, I've got to appreciate that he definitely isn't afraid to keep taking risks!

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Pierre » Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:12 pm

FrankLotion wrote:I'm getting a really sad feeling like this might be the start of the phase that a lot of great artists eventually devolve into where their new music is only passable.

Maybe I'm just overreacting here, I'll always love Kanye and I'm really happy he is taking a step back to work on his mental health these days and channel that in his music. Either way, I've got to appreciate that he definitely isn't afraid to keep taking risks!


It's not the start of Kanye's degeneration; this was My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy lyrics-wise, and then The Life of Pablo production-wise. The youngsters here keep forgetting it, but Kanye's first four albums were fantastic on both accounts, something that none of his albums since then can boast.

The College Dropout, Late Registration and 808s & Heartbreak are masterpieces and Graduation is really really great, and this four-album streak remains his best period. Everyone keep forgetting that, but My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy came out at a point when people were on the verge of questioning whether Kanye was still relevant, because 808s was (undeservedly) not that well received on release (see that infamous South Park episode), and also for an exogenous reason: in the second half of the 2000s, critical interest in hip-hop was fading (not commercial, although some surveys at the time indicated that rock music was starting to be commercially more viable. All this context seems to have been forgotten today, but not by me), save for a few names like Lil Wayne. Just open the pages here on AM for 2006-2009, and search for "hip hop" (or simply "hop", it works), and you'll notice that for this period, acclaimed hip-hop albums are very few. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is probably the most groundbreaking production work in Kanye's career, and it single-handedly reignited critical interest in hip-hop, and therefore that album is quite overrated (it DESERVES acclaim, but not that much, because starting with this album Kanye's lyrics SUCK) and the albums that came after that have been carried by My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy's blast, but they never came off to me as being as great as his first albums. The best hip-hop albums in recent years have come from the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Danny Brown, and hype-wise, they're stuck in the shadow of Kanye, because the critics run along with his fantasy of being the voice of his generation, despite the fact that his lyrics suck, his public life has been a mess and his personal life, despite being covered by all tabloids in existence, is bafflingly vapid (quite frankly, Kim Kardashian is a totally uninteresting human being, and probably a bad inspiration source for young girls).

Whatever. People will keep creating a thread on music forums each time the guy releases something for years to come; I'll just try to avoid them as much as possible, as I should have with this one.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Nassim » Sat Jun 02, 2018 5:36 pm

Pierre wrote:The best hip-hop albums in recent years have come from the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Danny Brown.


And Vince Staples, the Summertime 06, Primadonna, Big Fish Theory stretch is way underrated in my opinion. (well, and RTJ but I'll give you a pass on that one)

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 5:50 pm

Nassim wrote:
Pierre wrote:The best hip-hop albums in recent years have come from the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Danny Brown.


And Vince Staples, the Summertime 06, Primadonna, Big Fish Theory stretch is way underrated in my opinion. (well, and RTJ but I'll give you a pass on that one)

Was hoping to give RTJ more of a listen, then that Killer Mike stuff happened and I’m not interested.
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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Nick » Sat Jun 02, 2018 6:50 pm

Pierre wrote:(it DESERVES acclaim, but not that much, because starting with this album Kanye's lyrics SUCK)


Which lyrics on MBDTF do you think suck? I don't exactly think that the lyrics on that album are among the best in the genre or anything, but there are a number of great verses on the album, especially from Kanye himself. Just take his first verse on "Gorgeous" as an example. Overall I think the album is quite strong lyrically.

Anyway, it seems as if Kanye's "golden age" has come to an end. It's been obvious for about a decade now that Kanye West is among the upper echelon of artists, the likes of Bowie or Prince or Springsteen, in the eyes of the critics. And with all artists of that caliber, there's a period in which they're producing their absolute best work, album after album, song after song. In 30 years time, that "golden age" for Kanye will probably be seen as from 2003 (the release date of "Slow Jamz" and "Through the Wire") to 2016 (the release of The Life of Pablo).

So that's a solid 13 years of golden material. 13 years is a mighty long time, but how does it compare to similar "upper echelon" artists?

So here are all the solo artists ranked higher than Kanye West on AM. I've (somewhat arbitrarily) defined an artist's "golden age" as a period of time in which...

A) The artist in question released their most acclaimed album or song
B) The artist in question released an album or song in the AM top 2,000, so long as that album or song was released at most five years before or after the release of their most acclaimed work
C) The artist in question released an album or song in the AM top 2,000, so long as that album or song was released at most five years before or after the release of an album of song that fits the specification outlined in "B)"

If that's a bit confusing, let me give an example. David Bowie's 2013 album The Next Day is within the top 2,000 albums on AM, but is not included in his "golden age", as it was released more than five years after his 1983 album Let's Dance, which in turn was released less than five years after Scary Monsters, which in turn was released less than five years after his acclaimed run of albums from 1975 to 1977, which in turn were released less than five years after his most acclaimed album, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.

Make sense?

Anyway, here we go...

Bob Dylan: 1962 (Bob Dylan) to 1976 (Desire): 14 years
David Bowie: 1969 ("Space Oddity") to 1983 (Let's Dance): 14 years
Bruce Springsteen: 1973 (Greetings from Asbury Park N.J.) to (Tunnel of Love) 1987: 14 years
Neil Young: 1969 (Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere) to 1979 (Live Rust): 10 years
Prince: 1979 ("I Wanna Be Your Lover") to 1987 (Sign 'O' the Times): 8 years
Elvis Presley: 1954 ("That's All Right") to 1961 ("Can't Help Falling In Love"): 7 years

So framed in this regard, Kanye's 13 year run is pretty normal for an artist of his caliber.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Rob » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:20 pm

Nick wrote:Make sense?


Yes, but I think this kind of evaluating of an artists career is bringing it to the point of meaninglessness. Case in point would definitely be Bob Dylan and Bowie, who both had major late-career resurgences that are definitely part of their legacy. And compare such a thing with the erratic career of Neil Young, as well as the total different career trajectory of Prince (whose critical appreciation after, say, 1992 evaporated in a very total way as far as new material is concerned). What your left with are massively different careers that can have high points pretty much anywhere.

Also, should Life of Pablo really be counted as a highlight? Everybody has their own criteria I guess, but I think that even with the criticism that album got the reception was still incredibly generous.

[I also do cringe somewhat by the idea of someone with self-centered and frequently idiotic lyrics like Kanye West is a voice of a generation. Give me Kendrick Lamar any time].

I haven't listened to Ye yet and considering I've been rather tired of his type of navel-gazing for some years it might not happen soon.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:38 pm

I miss the old Kanye...
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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby prosecutorgodot » Sun Jun 03, 2018 2:22 am

Echoing Rob, I think this is the album where everyone gets tired of Kanye's navel-gazing (if you weren't already). Well at least for me, I am getting tired of the tabloid content of his music only now.

This album is very similar to TLOP. It has the giant choral vocals, and those synthesizers that sound like headlights casting pale light onto objects. Like the album cover, there is no subtlety to Kanye's lyrics and intentions. And the same themes of family and ego/insanity continue from TLOP.

Echoing others, this is Kanye hitting mediocrity. This is the first album in his discography (besides maybe Watch the Throne) that is not sonically unique.

The album is pretty good. If you buy into Kanye's cult of personality, you might even think it's great. The only part of the music I found obnoxious was Kid Cudi's usual off-key crooning.

I'm giving it a woop-diddy-scoop-poop/10.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby bootsy » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:07 pm

StevieFan13 wrote:
Nassim wrote:
Pierre wrote:The best hip-hop albums in recent years have come from the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Danny Brown.


And Vince Staples, the Summertime 06, Primadonna, Big Fish Theory stretch is way underrated in my opinion. (well, and RTJ but I'll give you a pass on that one)

Was hoping to give RTJ more of a listen, then that Killer Mike stuff happened and I’m not interested.

You should still listen. You really let what he said decide whether you listen to his music or not. You really let things get to you way too much. He's already gone back on what he said so that should help. LISTEN TO THOSE ALBUMS.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Pierre » Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:43 am

Pitchfork's review is out. 7.1 (even though the review is pretty negative). Also, from the conclusion:

Pitchfork wrote:[...]Maybe we cared way too much, projecting all that genius onto a guy who wore shutter shades and never missed an opportunity for a mayonnaise pun. Maybe it created a dynamic that’s turned out to be actively toxic to both music and politics. Maybe we should abolish the word “genius,” or just find heroes who give a shit.[...]


My, my, are we having an epiphany Pitchfork? :D

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Mon Jun 04, 2018 11:46 am

Pierre wrote:Pitchfork's review is out. 7.1 (even though the review is pretty negative). Also, from the conclusion:

Pitchfork wrote:[...]Maybe we cared way too much, projecting all that genius onto a guy who wore shutter shades and never missed an opportunity for a mayonnaise pun. Maybe it created a dynamic that’s turned out to be actively toxic to both music and politics. Maybe we should abolish the word “genius,” or just find heroes who give a shit.[...]


My, my, are we having an epiphany Pitchfork? :D

Pitchfork having a moment of hubris! How delicious.
Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand - Sir Duke (1976)

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Harold » Mon Jun 04, 2018 11:57 am

Pierre wrote:Pitchfork's review is out. 7.1 (even though the review is pretty negative).


After reading the review I had to do a double-take at the rating to make sure it wasn't actually 1.7. It sure as hell isn't a positive review. The 7.1 looks like a "no-lower-than-this-for-our-favorite" editorial edict, like Rolling Stone with U2.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby PlasticRam » Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:21 pm

I gave the same rating as P4K too.
I feel like that

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:38 pm

bootsy wrote:
StevieFan13 wrote:
Nassim wrote:
And Vince Staples, the Summertime 06, Primadonna, Big Fish Theory stretch is way underrated in my opinion. (well, and RTJ but I'll give you a pass on that one)

Was hoping to give RTJ more of a listen, then that Killer Mike stuff happened and I’m not interested.

You should still listen. You really let what he said decide whether you listen to his music or not. You really let things get to you way too much. He's already gone back on what he said so that should help. LISTEN TO THOSE ALBUMS.

I heard the third one's alright, that could be worth a listen.

And I just have certain principles about what I listen to, is all.
Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand - Sir Duke (1976)

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby bootsy » Tue Jun 05, 2018 3:27 am

StevieFan13 wrote:
bootsy wrote:
StevieFan13 wrote:Was hoping to give RTJ more of a listen, then that Killer Mike stuff happened and I’m not interested.

You should still listen. You really let what he said decide whether you listen to his music or not. You really let things get to you way too much. He's already gone back on what he said so that should help. LISTEN TO THOSE ALBUMS.

I heard the third one's alright, that could be worth a listen.

And I just have certain principles about what I listen to, is all.

I strongly suggest listening to all of their albums. The guy endorsed guns and admitted it was a mistake he didn't say go out and say shoot someone. It's ok. I'm not with it either but I'm not that principled. :mrgreen:

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Tue Jun 05, 2018 7:00 am

bootsy wrote:
StevieFan13 wrote:
bootsy wrote:You should still listen. You really let what he said decide whether you listen to his music or not. You really let things get to you way too much. He's already gone back on what he said so that should help. LISTEN TO THOSE ALBUMS.

I heard the third one's alright, that could be worth a listen.

And I just have certain principles about what I listen to, is all.

I strongly suggest listening to all of their albums. The guy endorsed guns and admitted it was a mistake he didn't say go out and say shoot someone. It's ok. I'm not with it either but I'm not that principled. :mrgreen:

Fair enough.
Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand - Sir Duke (1976)

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Live in Phoenix » Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:49 pm

2 1/2 stars from Rolling Stone, not even the generic 3. It's been 20+ years since the last example I can recall of them slamming a well-established artist (Public Enemy and Tori Amos).

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby StevieFan13 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:05 am

Live in Phoenix wrote:2 1/2 stars from Rolling Stone, not even the generic 3. It's been 20+ years since the last example I can recall of them slamming a well-established artist (Public Enemy and Tori Amos).

Yeah, usually they're kindest to the well-established ones (look at them with U2 and Dylan...).
Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand - Sir Duke (1976)

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Maschine_Man » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:38 am

I drew my line with Kanye a few years ago. I'm not going to support his ego.

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Re: Kanye West - Ye

Postby Gillingham » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:03 am

Harold wrote:
Pierre wrote:Pitchfork's review is out. 7.1 (even though the review is pretty negative).


After reading the review I had to do a double-take at the rating to make sure it wasn't actually 1.7. It sure as hell isn't a positive review. The 7.1 looks like a "no-lower-than-this-for-our-favorite" editorial edict, like Rolling Stone with U2.


Agreed, could be a consequence of the Condé Nast takeover, unfortunately...


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