>>649573>making sure to get features he knew wouldn't outshine him and make him look better
I can believe this, I mean think about it his previous album MBDTF had a fuckton of features who obviously outshined him on almost every track (even Nicki Minaj, Rick Ross and Jay-Z managed to sound better than him).
I also see what you mean about the whole public spectacle of his life. For me it seems, the "College Trilogy" was Kanye's rise to fame and showcasing his production and rapping talent. They obviously have his best verses from a technical and lyrical standpoint, and I'm pretty sure they have the most production that was COMPLETELY done by him. By comparison, MBDTF and Yeezus are less lyrical and less technical BUT he works with literally 20+ producers to make these monsterous masterpieces of beats/instrumentals that you really just don't hear anywhere else in hip-hop (you could argue about Yeezus being influenced by the underground industrial/noise-hop scene but as far as MBDTF goes, I don't think there is another rap album that sounds like it).
And as Kanye associates himself with more and more big names, and becomes more and more famous, and loved, and hated, and scrutinized, etc. his ego grows and grows until he literally sees himself as a god. Like, people will defend some of the things he does as being self-aware but watch any actual interview with Kanye and you will realize this dude has no self-awareness, at all. He really thinks he's a god, he really thinks he's the greatest artist of our generation.
He says what he wants and he says it because he believes it and he has no filter. It would actually really surprise me if Kanye was ever caught in a big lie because he has always been honest for better or worse. I mean he publicly admitted that he was millions of dollars in debt. He has acknowledged in his lyrics that his own wife is famous basically for being a slut and making a sex tape with another rapper who fell off, and he raps about this like he's proud of it.
But at the same time, you can tell that even with his ego, and the absolutely ridiculous things he says, he does try his best. That's the problem--in some areas (ex: music) his best is amazing, but in other areas (ex: fashion or the public eye) his best is terrible. But have you ever noticed how even though he has two children now, he almost never allows them to be photographed, especially without himself present? I have a feeling that he knows his ego will destroy his children's lives if he lets it, just like any other celebrity family.
And then you've got 808s, which was like a midpoint for his career, and critically it was kind of a flop yet it turned out to be his most influential album. It literally paved the way for rappers like Drake to be as successful as they are, because Kanye made it okay to be vulnerable, and honest, and emotional in ways that you didn't see a lot in mainstream hip-hop. That's why Graduation's sales versus that 50 Cent album's sales was such a big deal, because Graduation outselling that album was almost like a signification of the death of gansgta rap for good.
And now here we are, and gangsta rap isn't very popular anymore. People want conscious shit like Kendrick and J Cole, or emotional shit like Drake, or dumb trap shit like Young Thug and Future. The classic gangsta rapper from the 90s is no longer relevant. And Kanye played a huge role in that.
Oh, and one more thing: I don't think TLOP was a complete dud, but I do think it is his worst, and I think that he had no clue what he really wanted to do with that album. It almost seems to me like he released it just because people wanted him to so badly. If that's really the best he can do now, then I think it may be the beginning of him falling off.
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