Jesus Is King
Kanye’s New Album
Kanye West’s long awaited gospel album “Jesus Is King” dropped last Friday 10/25. Some were skeptical at first, considering the album has no cursing, and has a revolving theme of Christianity. This is not to say that Kanye has not tested these waters before. His album 808s & Heartbreak (2008) contained no cursing while The Life of Pablo (2016) crossed into gospel/hip-hop territory. However, Ye went all in with the gospel genre in his ninth studio album. This theme did not come out of the blue. Kanye has been teasing gospel themed songs for years, doing Sunday services with Chance the Rapper and preaching about his change to Christianity for some time now.
It’s always tough to judge an entire album after only a few listens. However, my first reaction is rather positive. The beats are dramatic and energizing, almost as if you’re standing in the audience of one of Kanye’s church services. Many of the songs feature a loud, soulful choir in the background with fitting verses and hooks from Kanye himself. It’s hard to tell if this is an album that I will come back to in the weeks to come, or if it’s a piece that will be left in 2019. Who knows? Maybe this album will turn out like Yeezus, and age like a fine wheel of cheese!
What Lies Ahead
Mr. West is notably unpredictable. No album is exactly like the last, and his discography is proof that his musical talents have no bounds. His hip-hop/rap roots have crossed into orchestral, trap, electronic, jazz, and now gospel! The big question on the minds of Kanye fans are, will he keep up with the Christian rap? Or will he cross into new territory?
In my opinion, I think Kanye will keep up with his theme of diversifying his discography. I have a theory that Kanye West wants to be the most diverse hip-hop artist of all time, which leads me to believe that he won’t keep up with the gospel music. But then again, I don’t even think Kanye himself knows what his next album will be about yet. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…