Kanye West has always been this interesting figure, detached from humanity and reality. He seemed omnipotent, all-powerful and full of zest and spirit. He was always this larger-than-life being. Now, with “Jesus is King,” he feels like anyone else.
I can now relate to Kanye, sort of.
I went to Catholic school. I took various classes about religion and skimmed through the Bible. I know like six of the Ten Commandments. I used to remember whatever the hell the Beatitudes are. I probably know the same amount of stuff about Jesus and God as Kanye does, which, actually, isn’t all that much.
This album doesn’t say a lot about faith or Jesus or anything really. It just exists. It just is.
It’s full of random Bible verses, Kanye comparing himself to biblical figures and Kanye-isms that will make 14-year-olds sit slack-jawed on the school bleachers saying, “Woah, that’s deep.”
Kanye thinks he’s saying something, but in reality he’s saying nothing at all. Kanye hasn’t said a lot of meaningful things, but on albums like “Life of Pablo” and “Yeezus,” at least the things he was saying were fun.
This album just feels like something my youth pastor would put on while making sure the boys and girls stayed on opposite sides of the dancefloor. It’s sanitized, which is fine, but the cleanliness just seems so awkward and disingenuous after hearing Kanye rap about bleached orifices.
The existence of “Jesus is King” itself is more interesting than any of the songs or production choices. It feels like a strange heel turn for West, but at the same time it feels extremely Kanye.
He compares himself to Noah. He says things like, “What if Eve made apple juice?” Both of those things sound like something he would say on past records. I guess the lack of cursing and sex references makes it seem like a massive departure.
This album is just weird; it’s confusing. “Closed on Sunday” features acoustic guitar and a haunting choir. It sounds like it could be featured in one of the “Midsommar” trailers. But then he keeps saying “You’re my Chick-Fil-A.” It’s bizarre and just thinking about it too hard makes me pissed off.
Listening to “Jesus is King” fills me with complicated emotions. I can’t believe this is where Kanye is as an artist now, but at the same time I’m not surprised at all.