Kanye West’s “Jesus Is King” Review


Getty Images for Coachella

INDIO, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 21: Kanye West performs Sunday Service during the 2019 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival on April 21, 2019 in Indio, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images for Coachella)

Christian Branch, Writer

Kanye West has been in the public spotlight nonstop recently, both for his music and his political views. The decorated producer and artist received heavy criticism for his outspoken support for President Donald Trump, as well as for the confusion regarding when his newest album would be dropping. West’s music has consistently incorporated gospel aspects and hinted at his religious beliefs all throughout his career, but the extent of his beliefs was hard to follow. With his song “Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1” on his album Life of Pablo, West opens with a gospel sample, then follows up the sample by rapping about topics that starkly contrast Christianity and its values. After Life of Pablo, Kanye released ye, an all-over-the-place record that came out of nowhere. From there, Yandhi was set to drop in September of 2018, but never did, and fans all over the world were left hanging. During this time is when Kanye spoke openly about his support for Trump, and in the same period, it is safe to assume that he underwent a religious rebirth, thanks to his newest album.

Jesus Is King, which just dropped in late October, is an album, unlike anything Kanye has released before. A commitment to following Jesus Christ, as well as a confession of his sinful nature, this album serves as a wake-up call not only to fans of West, but also the music industry as a whole. From old African rhythms to growling Hammond organs, to rising gospel choirs, the unique production on this record may possibly revolutionize the way the industry looks at the gospel and even hip-hop in the future. Kanye is done with submitting to “the culture.” Money, jewelry, cars, and drugs are all subjects that hip-hop utilizes to garner revenue. Jesus Is King deals with the complete opposite of these topics. After moving 274 thousand units in the first week of its release, Kanye has proved to the industry that there is more to music than making money.