audio review : Late Registration ( album ) … Kanye West

audio review : Late Registration ( album ) ... Kanye West

Following the formula that made his debut album a success story, literally if you let the last track play out, College Dropout Kanye West takes us back to school with an all-new album. Well, it’s not “all” new. A lot of this music has been around for decades. That’s the fact this self-proclaimed hip-hop “legend” in the making has to thank more than anything else. West has a remarkable knack for lacing classic soul samples over modern beats flawlessly enough to create his own brand of ghetto funk, in other words, but the “own” part is up for debate.

You can’t deny the originality of the raps. His skills are still middle-class; compare for example his Drive Slow verse to the Iller one Eminem spit over the same sample for his Slim Shady EP; but he shares his thoughts on these songs with the kind of sloppy honesty you’d (I’d) like to hear on rap albums more often. This semester has him turning his nose up to the freshmen; “since Pac passed away, most you rappers don’t even deserve a track from me,” he boasts as if he’s been on top for a decade; but that’s just what fame and fortune does to some people.

His take of Diamonds isn’t what you may think though. And when he sees a Gold Digger, a young black woman who “ain’t messing with no broke niggas”, he’s using the gritty drive of the drums to egg her on. This is “black” music, after all, Crack Music to drop out of college and register late to, for what he’d describe as “my” people. Even when that segregated unity borderlines sugarcoated racism, the verses aren’t outstanding enough nor is the music not brilliantly distracting enough to strike any serious nerves among the campus back-packers.

my rating : 4 of 5


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