Masterfully orchestrated, intently verbose and emotionally charged, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” is a dense and complex mixture of the lyrical musings of a rhyme maestro unsure of his place in the world. More than any artist now, Kanye West goes above and beyond the norm and creates one of the most fascinating albums to be released in recent memory.
Each track in “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” portrays a different part of West’s persona. Hitting highs and lows, the album builds to a climax like a movie, beginning with West’s self-praise and ending on his self-loathing. He includes a smooth transition between each track, which creates a seamless experience.
The first track, “Dark Fantasy,” establishes an ominous overtone with a downtrodden beat and pessimistic lyrics that pervade the album. In “Power,” West scorns his haters while asserting his own creativity, stating he “got treasures in my mind, but couldn’t open up my own vault.” The proceeding tracks counterbalance West’s earlier boastfulness by revealing his introspectiveness.
West did not accomplish this all by himself, as he enlisted the help of hip-hop’s greatest and newest stars, including Jay-Z, KiD CuDi and Rick Ross. The most notable collaboration comes from newcomer Nicki Minaj, whose wittiness explodes on “Monster” with clever, hard-hitting verses that hold up against Kanye and Jay-Z’s lines.
With fantastic collaborations, diverse compositions, stellar pacing and strong direction, West’s “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” delivers on all fronts and makes it arguably the most accomplished and complete album of the year.