It’s Yeezy season, everybody. This week, Kanye West made a surprise (isn’t everything he does a “surprise” these days?) appearance at the iHeartRadio Media Summit in Burbank, California. He didn’t crash the stage or anything; his appearance was announced, and planned in secret. Which is probably why he gave a fairly tame speech about innovation that concluded with his playing a Rihanna-featuring track from his as-of-yet-untitled seventh album. And then he walked off the stage to a sanding ovation. … Read More
Another week, another manufactured “controversy” surrounding Kanye West. Yeezus’ recent tour stop in Sydney, Australia garnered a fresh round of publicity — read: media coverage with ugly subtext — when a standard order for the audience to stand up left West momentarily frustrated with a couple of disabled fans. After a few minutes, West got the message and the show went on, but not before Kanye-“yells”-at-innocent-wheelchair-bound-fan became the latest piece of micro-evidence in the “crazed/egomaniacal/[insert loaded descriptor here]” narrative that’s been a part of West’s image from Hurricane Katrina through Yeezus. I won’t link to any of the write-ups, but if you’d like to watch a decent performance of “The Good Life,” the footage is available here. … Read More
Is the Q&A the perfect form for a nation to actually listen to what Kanye West has to say? The most interesting musician currently working, West is also constantly misrepresented in the mainstream and tabloid media, whose reports paint him in “crazy” colors that often carry undertones of racism — particularly after the perfect storm of hooking up with the world’s most successful celebrity, Kim Kardashian. And in a new GQ cover story, he’s got plenty of insight to share. … Read More
Late last year, in what seemed like a lost bet with his label Def Jam, Kanye West did a nationwide commercial radio tour. I’m not talking about the next-level Zane Lowe BBC interview everyone raved over, I’m talking about Kanye going to pop and “urban”-format radio stations with cheesy DJs in nearly every major market where his Yeezus Tour stopped. Some of these interviews made headlines, but mostly the DJs were intimidated by Kanye and let him ramble on about whatever he damn well pleased, be it Adidas or Kardashians. … Read More
Oh, Bret. After making waves in the ’80s and ’90s with novels chronicling the ennui of the urban super-wealthy, he’s been on a weird run. There were the poorly received sequels to early hits, there was Lindsay Lohan disaster The Canyons, and now, there’s a slew of new projects. The latest, announced today, involves none other than Rob Zombie. It’s difficult to keep track of all the bizarre collaborations and solo efforts Ellis is currently involved with (in addition to his always-entertaining Twitter), so here’s a guide to what we can expect from the author and provocateur in the near future. … Read More
Kanye West was on Late Night with Seth Meyers last night, and in the absence of anything they could call a “rant,” the media seems rather nonplussed by the whole thing: most of the reports this morning have focused on his performance, rather than the interview he did with Meyers. This is interesting, because West returned to subject matter he’s been discussing for most of the last year. The difference is that this time there were fewer soundbites and less anger — and hey, if there’s no rant to report, it’s not worth reporting!
So, yes, James Franco and Seth Rogen released “Bound 3,” a shot-for-shot parody of Kanye West’s “Bound 2″ video. If you were somehow hiding under a rock yesterday, you can compare the original and the parody here. We don’t really have a great deal to add to Jody Rosen’s verdict on the Franco/Rogen spoof at Vulture — honestly, if anyone still wants to argue that West doesn’t know what he’s doing, it probably says more about them than it does West. But still, the video does open up the idea of all sorts of other reinterpretations of the, um, distinctive imagery of “Bound 2.” Behold. … Read More
Last week, the release of Kanye West’s video for “Bound 2″ sent everyone clamoring towards their keyboards. Opinions varied but,… Read More