You may have seen Kanye embarrass himself on Saturday Night Live this weekend. It was not a surprise to me, because I've been watching him embarrass himself all over TV for the last two weeks. He's been going around the late night shows and was on "Today" doing the same thing: singing horribly.
His new album is called "808s and Heartbreaks". It's a new direction for the Ye. He went with rapping on his first three albums, probably a good idea since he's a rapper. But he decided to sing (with the use of Auto Tune) on this one. Some critics have hailed this new direction, and Kanye thinks he's doing some bold new shit. I'm not a music critic, but this genius new direction would be a lot more geniuser if T-Pain, Lil' Wayne, and Cher hadn't done it first.
So why the change? Well, I heard him interviewed and he said that when he would perform his old songs, the crowd would all sing along to the hook and he loved it, and it made him want to do an entire album that crowds could sing along to. Here's the problem with that philosophy: on his previous albums, Kanye wasn't the one singing those hooks. It was T-Pain, or Chris Martin, or Dwele, or a Steely Dan sample. Maybe he was just pissed that people had the nerve to only sing along to the parts of songs he had nothing to do with.
So now he's going around singing these songs live, without auto tune, and it is awful. Which kinda makes sense, since he's not a singer. And what I find to be a good rule of thumb is: before embarking on an album where you intend to sing, it's a good idea to be able to sing. Having a good singing voice is one of the most critical aspects of singing.
The only song on the album I like is "Heartless", which coincidentally is the only one with (sorta) rapping on it. Kanye is a great producer, and it feels like a bunch of songs he produced for someone else, aka someone that doesn't need a computer to sound good. That might've been a good album.
I think we all enjoyed Kanye's bat shit craziness in the past. It was fun. But now it's affecting his music and I can't stand for that. Kanye needs to get back to rapping and stop trying to sing live. Maybe he should also do what Britney Spears did...shave his head, that AC Green circa 1987 thing ain't working.