I like the beats on Kanye West’s new album. I love the inversion of that famous line about Malcolm X–“That’s too much power for one man to have.” I think he’s an improved MC. But I’m a little amazed that no one’s disturbed by “Champagne wishes/30 white bitches” as a hook. I’m more amazed at his empty employment of white women as objects. I’m less amazed, but pretty depressed, that colorism is back–“Rolling with some light-skin chicks and some Kelly Rowlands,” is little more than “you’re pretty for a dark-skin girl” in this postracial era.
All told, the album strikes me as incredibly, almost casually, racist. On some level, I wonder what would have become of John Mayer, had he cut a video with dead black women strewn about and invoked black women throughout his lyrics in the manner Kanye does.