Grammy-winning rapper Kanye West is officially back on his music grind after unveiling his “New Slaves” single in more than 60 cities Friday (May 17) night.
According to reports, Yeezy relied on a new form of promo for his upcoming untitled solo album’s first single.
Tonight Kanye West premiered “New Slaves,” the first single from his forthcoming LP, by projecting a video on buildings across the world. His site includes a map of times and locations for those projections, 66 in all. It’s the same song Hudson Mohawke spun in Poland recently. Earlier this month, the rapper previewed new material at the Met Ball and Adult Swim’s upfront, but decent recordings from those events have been scarce. Tonight’s launch was better documented. (Stereo Gum)
On the record, Mr. West channels his inner College Dropout days with topics involving materialism and racial stereotypes.
“My mama was raised in the era when/ Clean water was only served to the fairer skin/ Threw on clothes, you would’ve thought I had help/ But they wasn’t satisfied unless I picked the cotton myself,” ‘Ye spit, setting the tone. From the video’s first few moments it was clear that this was something different, even for a rapper who has made a career off of wearing pink polos and singing an entire album in auto-tune. At the same time there was something familiar as Kanye challenged materialistic habits and racial stereotypes like he did on his 2005 single “All Falls Down.” “What you want a Bentley, fur coat, a diamond chain/ All you blacks want all the same things,” he rhymed, making for an uncomfortable, but necessary listen. (MTV)
Yeezy premiered his record on various well-known city buildings.
All the locations where you can check this out–both the new song and the accompanying visual–are mapped on KanyeWest.com: The 10 cities are New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Toronto, Paris, London, Berlin, and Sydney, with most or all cities featuring multiple locations. (Slate)
Kanye made sure to give his fans the head’s up about the premiere hours prior via social media outlet Twitter.
“NEW SONG AND VISUAL FROM MY NEW ALBUM BEING PROJECTED TONIGHT ACROSS THE GLOBE ON 66 BUILDINGS, LOCATIONS @ http://KANYEWEST.COM,” Kanye tweeted May 17th. (Kanye West’s Twitter)
Check out “New Slaves”: