Warning: This is not Yeezy's lullaby album. Instead, with Yeezus, Kanye West unveils an audacious maelstrom of clobbering hip-hop beats, blaring jabs of techno, smart retro sampling and, of course, manifestos about his own greatness.
"I'm aware I'm a king," he gloats on the rampageous "Black Skinhead" over violent drum lines and death-metal surges. And he dubs himself "the only rapper who could compare to Michael [Jackson] on the riveting "I Am a God." Well, he does have a point.
Here are what other reviewers are saying about Yeezus:
"Being a work of Kanye West, Yeezus is also a brilliant, obsessive-compulsive career auto-correct…. This isn't just a way to stay ahead of the competition; it's a way to stay ahead of himself." --Jon Dolan, Rolling Stone
"Twenty years from now, West's previous records will remain important, but a new generation may first gravitate to the lean vibrancy of this one." --Sasha Frere Jones, The New Yorker
"Yeezus is not merely the ramblings of an a--hole that equates Godliness with material wealth or status. It's a record that could be heard as the diary of an artist who is well aware of his immense influence and the spoils that come with it, but is not exactly comfortable with the deal." --Keith Murphy, Vibe
"[The] album is one long, efficient, inventive kick in the head.” --Jon Pareles, The New York Times
"Brash and bombastic, Yeezus is essentially the sound of Kanye giving everybody the middle finger and more than anything else, it’s that confrontational attitude that makes it one of the best albums of 2013.” –-Hardeep Phull, The New York Post
"Mix as many heavenly metaphors as you want -- this is goddamned good art.” -– Chris Martins, Spin
"West's music always keeps us thinking about the future. He's a visionary who's managed to tweak the serial rhythms that dictate so much of our pop culture diet. He doesn't do cliffhangers. He jumps off. We gasp, gawk and wonder,'‘Where will he land?' " -- Chris Richards, Washington Post
This article originally appeared on Usmagazine.com: Yeezus Review: Kanye West's New Album Is "Audacious" and "Riveting"