High sales may no longer be a guarantee with Kanye West (as seen by last year’s ‘Yeezus’), yet one thing the rapper is ever consistent in serving up is controversy.
Mr Kardashian poses it up in the February issue of Interview magazine, with the spread certainly likely to set tongues wagging thanks to a careful blend of dark imagery and religious overtones.
Equally engaging is West’s interview piece with Steve McQueen, excerpts from which can be found below. These days it appears few have a clear-cut understanding of who Kanye is or wants to be. However, as his words below highlight, he seems as sure of himself as sure can be.
“I’m a trained fine artist. I went to art school from the time I was 5 years old. I was, like, a prodigy out of Chicago
“I’d been in national competitions from the age of 14. I got three scholarships to art schools … and I went to the American Academy of Art. So the joke that I’ve actually played on everyone is that the entire time, I’ve actually just been a fine artist. I just make sonic paintings, and these sonic paintings have led me to become whatever people think of when you say ‘Kanye West …’”
“I want the power to create what is in my mind. That’s my dream. I want to be able to have a thought or an idea and bring it into reality.
“If I want to design a product, or if I think of a new way for us to view films, then I want to be able to do it. And what happened was that when we made ‘Watch the Throne,’ it was such an accomplishment, and I had a bit of money in my account, so I just started chasing other dreams.
I did two fashion shows in one year — at one of them, I had go-karts that people could ride. I also shot a film in ‘surround vision,’ where I had seven screens — three in front of the audience, one above, one below, one to the left, one to the right. This is after designing ‘Watch the Throne’ — and I was putting my money towards it. I put the amount of free income that I could put into it, which went into the millions.
“I went around and showed people what I’d done and said, ‘Hey, I made “Watch the Throne,” I made this amount of music for the past 10 years, I have this level of visuals, this level of communication, I can sell this many albums, and I also have these new inventions. Will anybody help me out?’ I met with 30 billionaires, 30 companies, and basically everyone said, ‘F— you.’ I said, ‘How could this happen? How could not one person want to invest in these different ideas?’ …
“As a celebrity, I have an opportunity to make a living at being the spokesperson for the third or fourth rendition of a thought — promoting something that has already been proven. The problem is that I like to be the inventor — I’m the person who works on the concept, who invents new thoughts, who brings new ideas into the universe. I’m not the guy who works on selling the idea — I’m not Vanna White for the new Hyundai. I am the guy who works on the concept for the car.
Too many people are scared. But it is my job to go up every night and talk about this kind of s—. It is actually my job. I’m like a broadcaster for futurism, for dreamers, for people who believe in themselves.”
As with most things Kanye these days, there actually is “sense” dotted through some of what he’s saying. Yet, it’s so swamped in self-importance and verboseness that much of the quality in his words evaporates as quickly as buyer interest in ‘Yeezus’.
More music, less mumbling, please.