Kanye Once Said He Had 40 Songs With Kendrick. 2 Collabos Now Surface. (Audio)
Kanye West is reportedly recording an album in the mountains of Wyoming. According to various sources, Nas, Pusha T, Travis Scott, Kid Cudi, and producer/musician/engineer Mike Dean are among the artists who have been in his company for the studio sessions dating back to 2017. Some, including Nas and Cudi, have been photographed while at the location.
Teyana Taylor, one of West’s current G.O.O.D. Music artists, tells Ebro In The Morning she recently witnessed a return of what she labels, “Polo ‘Ye.” During his rise within the Roc-A-Fella Records team, the MC/producer not only dressed in Ralph Lauren apparel as part of his brand, he also praised the clothing label on mixtapes and albums. This period also yielded beloved albums including the “college” trilogy: The College Dropout (2004) Late Registration (2005), and Graduation (2007). In 2008, following the death of his mother, West’s sound, subject matter, and his fashion shifted.
“[Kanye West] was so excited, we did one song where he was bangin’ on the desk and the mic was right there,” the star of West’s “Fade” reports. “I was just singin’ to what he was bangin’ on the desk.” The reports also follow a 2016 hospitalization, tour cancellation, and apparent slow-down period for the pop culture icon.
If the Wyoming mountain sessions lead to ‘Ye’s eighth solo album, it will be his first since early 2016’s The Life Of Pablo. That platinum album was the latest in a series of ensemble creations. Pablo involved a host of artists, ranging from Chance The Rapper and Frank Ocean to a background vocal from André 3000 and a beat by Madlib. It also yielded the “No More Parties In L.A.” collaboration between West and Kendrick Lamar.
Ahead of Pablo‘s release, when Kanye West was active on Twitter, he tweeted that he and Kendrick had “40 songs” (he said he had another 40 with Young Thug, too). Previously, Kanye and Kenny pair worked together in 2013, on “Nosetalgia” from Pusha’s My Name Is My Name LP on G.O.O.D. During that same period, the Compton, California MC was in superstar stride when he opened for Kanye on the Yeezus Tour. Known for working while on the road, many believed that there was recording happening during that arena run.
Two new Kanye and Kendrick collaborations have leaked. While the quality is far from album-level (including some background noise), these demo songs titled “Liberated” and “Don’t Jump” hit the web this week.
“Liberated” plays to a motif heard on The Life Of Pablo. “Father Stretch My Hands” is a two-part moment on that album, prompting a Top 40 single. “I just wanna feel liberated,” memorably vented West. Thirty seconds into the leaked “Liberated,” Kendrick Lamar raps. At first, he riffs on Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal” line, “Annie, are you okay?” before describing his sex life, in great detail, with the symbolic female. “I see the b*tch in them / I got the Benjamin’s / I got the dividends / I’m on my toes like Serena at the Wimbledon.” Kanye follows with a processed vocal that builds on his Auto-Tune work. Elements of “Father Stretch My Hands, Pt. 1” follow, matching the beat produced by West, Rick Rubin, Dean, Metro Boomin, DJDS, Allen Ritter, and Noah Goldstein.
“Don’t Jump,” features more of the traditional rapping style from Kendrick. The demo is just over a minute in length, and not believed to be a full song. Kendrick begins with “Barrels straight through the peep-hole,” before hard bars about street survival are rapped urgently over a frantic beat. The imagery is apocalyptic, as Kendrick’s nimble delivery describes a scene of fires, devils, and death.