Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Best New Track: Kanye West - "Famous"

Kanye West is certified nuts. And most of the time, an asshole. That being said, The Life of Pablo is quite possibly his greatest masterpiece.

Last week, following West's sold out Yeezy Season 3 fashion show at Madison Square Garden where he also debuted most of his (then) forthcoming new album, the internet erupted in disgrace at his misogynistic lyricism geared towards frienemy Taylor Swift. Specifically, "Famous" contains the lyric, "I feel like me and Taylor might have sex/ Why? I made that bitch famous." Excusing misogyny in music isn't the point here; it's as prevalent in rap as the widespread demonization of West and his laughable arrogance is. But, even as a feminist, I can't let a ridiculous bundle of words aimed at another celebrity completely discredit the brilliance of this song's assembly.

Start to finish, "Famous" is a stunning piece of music. We get antagonistic, quick-spitting Ye, packaged alongside Rihanna's smooth rendition of Nina Simone's "Do What You Gotta Do," which swings back later in its original format. The ticket to adoring "Famous," however, is the beautiful glimpse into Ye's brain as a mastermind producer, which hits around the 1:45 mark when Sister Nancy's reggae classic "Bam Bam" randomly interjects to round out the song. Morphed into an anthemic two-minutes of melodic bliss that wraps itself around the Simone sample, this middle eight of sorts is nothing you'd see coming - but completely irresistible once you know it's there.

Kanye has no shortage of insufferable moments, but this album - even an abrasive song like this - is certainly not one of them.

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