Sunday, May 19, 2013

Pardon, I'm Gettin' My Scream On: Kanye - "Black Skinhead" (New Slaves)

Rest assured, I guess you could say it was a pretty BIG week for Mr. West, who's finally come back into prominence for something else besides banging a Kardashian or walking into a street sign. Late Friday night Kanye debuted his new pseudo-video for "New Slaves" projected across 66 building sides in 10 major world cities; It's second unreleased 1/2 is rumored to feature Frank Ocean and the track supposedly utilizes an un-cleared sample culled from Hungarian Prog-Rock band, Omega. We're talkin' about guerrilla-style take-overs @ Wrigley Field (Chicago), Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Sydney, London, Paris, etc. projected out of make-shift truck/projectors sprawled across the night sky May 11-19th. This is all most likely part of an early promo campaign in support of Kanye's upcoming album [possibly titled] "Yeezus," which may or may not be out as early as June 18th. Earlier in the week, he took a break from rigorous recording sessions in Paris with everyone from Daft Punk to Chief Keef... and made a surprise appearance @ Adult Swim's Upfront event, where he performed inside a see-through pyramid and ranted about celebrity. Then, Kanye made his triumphant return to SNL this past Saturday night along with host Ben Affleck and long-time cast members' Fred Armisen/Bill Hader's final episode(s).

An out-of-character misty, cold rain for May slowly morphed into Sunday as Affleck introduced "the man you came to see," Kanye took the SNL stage for his first performance of the night; Backed by a band full of shadowy figures, a dimly-lit stage set, and a screen flashing old schools ads and sign-age. It almost sounds crazy, but "Black Skinhead"'s built around a sampled melody from shock rocker Marilyn Mason's early hit, "The Beautiful People" (1996). Accented by an introductory "AAAHH!!!" and a series of primal screams, Kanye rebelliously raps, "They see a black man with a white woman / at the top floor they gone come to kill King Kong... I keep it 300, like the Romans... What do you say to a masked man / this Inglorious Basterd that's rappin'?" The more I listen to it, I'm pretty sure "Black Skinhead" samples elements from Jock Jam staple "Rock and Roll" (The Hey Song), too. Just mere hours before SNL, Kanye's baby-momma-to-be Kim Kardashian Instagrammed an image much like the one above along with the cryptic message, "#Yeezus #RedYeezy's #SNL #Tonight #NewSlaves #YeezySeason #DONDA #June18."

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