Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Mar 15, 2019 (updated Mar 16, 2019)
98
Top ten anime plot twists, amiright? I guess I have an ego of 100 now. So I have more to say than usual and I'd like to clear some things first as I feel they're necessary to share my opinions.

For starters I don't consider myself a critic, at least not in the typical sense. I merely go into music with an empty conscious (most of the time) and I simply like what I like. I don't judge a record for what it's "missing" but for what it IS. Sometimes I might have something to say. I don't care if an album is innovative or original, it's all bullshit if I don't personally enjoy it. That's nothing against the album itself, it's just called subjectivity.

Which leads me to the second thing I'd like to address...I'm not a Kanye fan. Especially most of his fanbase. Anyone who knows me well knows that. If I have to hear one more Kanye stan talk I'm gonna choke someone Homer Simpson style. Like yeah, he HAS put good things out and I do think he has helped push hip-hop in interesting directions, but to call him an innovator seems likes too much. Like yeah dude I get it....your parents are rich and you've never heard of Flying Lotus or J Dilla. As for Kanye himself I'm afraid to say too much. I personally don't care for his antics, his music or his political stances. I find him an interesting figure, but not because I agree with him but because he's just polarizing. He's almost honest to a fault in my opinion. Like he doesn't think before he acts. However, I don't know the guy and I'm not going to make any assumptions or read an ocean of articles. I think that's just an invasion of privacy on my part.

Lastly I haven't listened to this album in years. 4-5 to be exact and prior to listening to this album I couldn't remember a single thing from it. To give you an idea I forgot 'Power' was a Kanye song. This record has a certain stigma between its admirers and haters that it makes it hard to enjoy for me and for a long time I just kept it far away from me. I don't wanna take part in any ridiculous conversations about the guy's music. Over the years I've slowly been more open to other rap and hip-hop releases. I wouldn't consider myself a hip-hop head or a connoisseur, but I have listened to enough albums to know what's out there. Commercial and underground to the point where I thought this was playing it safe at first. I mean, just before playing this album I only listened to 'Cosmogramma' (another record that you might see spike to a 100 soon, but for personal reasons) for 2-3 days straight locking myself in rooms whenever I could.

So with all that said....what is it I like about this so much? Do I think it's innovative? In some aspects, but mostly in the realms of Kanye's own career. Does it hit me in a personal area? Maybe a silly line or two (GOSH IT'S COOL NOW) but for the most part not really. That's what some of my other 100's are for, but I'm getting off topic. Did I have an experience like with Swans? Nah, but I have listened to this album nonstop for nearly two days milling over my thoughts for whatever it's worth. No, I like this record for a different reason and hear me out: it's human.

Do I mean "human" like Nick Drake where he's sharing his soul? Not really. I mean human in the sense that it's incredibly flawed. On first listen I actually considered giving this a three and never talking about it. I found it incredibly bloated, pompous, arrogant I felt that for a seemingly personal project Kanye certainly didn't seem involved enough. I felt like it was the most "Kanye" thing I've ever heard. For whatever reason though I kept coming back. I had a moment where I said:

"Wow, I can't stand this. Let's play it again."

At some point it hit me that this record being distinctively Kanye...was pretty much the point. I'm not the first to say that or even the first fir what I'm about to say so I won't go into crazy detail, but we all know Kanye is an incredibly flawed figure. To the point that he's pretty much the butt of all jokes. That said...he knows it too. Everything is out for display here. From is bloated ego to his suprisingly jaded vulnerability. I don't know what caused Kanye to write a song like 'Runaway' but god I nearly fell into tears. Not because I found myself relating to it, but all of a sudden I found myself sucked in and fully invested. In hindsight it's easy to see why. For example: Monster. This is easily my favorite song on here. I never thought I'd day this....but Nicki sent me to the hospital. Everyone is fully involved, almost like they add different perspectives, and sharing their own personality and talents without retracting from Kanye's conceptual flow and I think all of this can be said for the rest of this album. Well, at least for me.

I think it's easy to dismiss this album as egotistical and bloated. Frankly I wouldn't blame you. I think your enjoyment of this album MIGHT depend on your graciousness. I may be wrong, but it's very easy to judge and dismiss a figure like Kanye. I believe people aren't born the way they are...they're made. While 'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" doesn't really change my perception of Kanye or really go into Kanye's personal life in explicit detail, it does give me a bit of clarity on how to look at the man from a musical and personal standpoint. Kanye's discography is like a book with this quiet possibly being my favorite chapter. I think the way Kanye matches his personality with his music here is top notch and impeccably enjoyable. I like how open Kanye is. "Brave" seems like a word that gives too much credit to him, but in a way it just feels right. There have been plenty of releases before and after this album that are more boundary pushing than this and while I do enjoy those....I can't help but enjoy this a bit more. As a piece of music it's got it all and it's relatively consistent. In a way I can't help but wonder how something like this can exist.

That's everything. It's probable the score might go down and don't be surprised if it does. I don't plan on talking about this again. I don't wanna get tied in conversations like I mentioned earlier. This is a piece of music that reminds me why I love music in the first place and it made me appreciate hip-hop more in the process. Despite loving this album for the beats, the features, the lyrics, the composition, the attitude...I like this just simply because I do. Just like however Kanye see's his "twisted" fantasy, as the listener, I can't help but feel morbidly attracted to this album. It's such an earworm and it keeps me engaged from start to finish...oh and it's a meme too but whatevs-

GOSH IT'S COOL NOW

-Gav
13 Comments
Mar 15, 2019
Goddammit Gavin, once again you put me to shame and awe for just how honest and good your reviews are. Keep awesomeing!
Mar 15, 2019
AAAUUUUUGHHFFFFKKKK Thank you! I can only wish I could be half as consistent and on the nose as you and the many writers on amino. I'll do my best! Thank you again! Stay awesome too 🙆‍♂️
Mar 16, 2019
SERIOUSLY HOW THE HELL DO YOU WRITE THIS WELL HOLT SHIT
Mar 16, 2019
Oh you're too kind lol thank you
My mother and my late great uncle Lester have always been inspirations to me. Great writers in their own merit. If I do have anything worthy of note it stems from them. I'm hardly original in other words haha
Mar 17, 2019
Runaway is one of my absolute favorite songs. Who knew a committed narcissist was capable of such brutal honesty?
Mar 17, 2019
Ikr?! It's honestly mesmerizing. I honestly thought at first "nah, Pusha had to write this" but nope! God...what a song. (WHO GOTCHA?)
Mar 20, 2019
ok bitchfork
Mar 20, 2019
Listen here you in rainbows loving loona stanning kpop smoking cat snuggling cringe inducing belp I ain't got time fo yo bubblegum dumbass fantano worshiping troll enticing belle and sebastian crying will toledo exemplifying mouth
Mar 21, 2019
i knew there was a reason i followed you, thanks for reminding me <3
Mar 21, 2019
FUFJGKFUDUFBK WHY ARE YOU SO SWEET ; _ ;
Mar 22, 2019
silence, bitchfork
Mar 22, 2019
No u
Mar 23, 2019
Been on this site for nearly 2 years and this is my favourite review I've seen. Such a great all round summary, It made me want to stop what I was doing and immediately revisit the album. You've earned yourself a follow! :)
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