David Brooks, writing at Billboard:
When senior executives from Coachella parent Goldenvoice explained that the dome would be impossible to build in four months and would require the AEG-owned concert promoter to rearrange the entire festival site and remove a large section of portable bathrooms, West became irritated, declaring that he was an artist with a creative vision who shouldn’t be spending his time talking about port-a-potties.
Marc Hogan, writing for Pitchfork:
Kanye West and Tidal can’t dodge a lawsuit that alleges they tricked fans into subscribing to the streaming service by falsely claiming it would be the only place to hear West’s 2016 album The Life of Pablo, a judge has ruled.
In an an 18-page opinion today that was obtained by Pitchfork, U.S. District Court Judge Gregory Woods granted parts of Tidal’s motions to dismiss the proposed class-action lawsuit but denied other parts, allowing the case to go forward as it relates to a tweet West made on February 15, 2016.
Kanye West has the number one album this week:
The set — which was released on June 1 via G.O.O.D. Music/Def Jam Recordings — earned 208,000 equivalent album units in the week ending June 7, according to Nielsen Music, and is the fifth-largest week for an album in 2018. Of Ye’s starting sum, 85,000 were in traditional album sales.
When Kanye West reactivated his Twitter account, that was a sign something was coming. Without keeping fans in suspense, he tweeted about the new projects from G.O.O.D. Music. This list included his own album — this album — which was only given the title ye the night before its release. However, his tweets about his album aren’t all that built up the anticipation for this project. Rather, his culturally disturbing posts on Twitter, which he later topped with his outrageous words during an interview on TMZ, created a negative hype and suspense prior to release. Certainly, every listener would pay attention to his lyrics before any other ingredient on ye. Right now, his lyrics act as the thin thread between him and the audience.
Ta-Nehisi Coates, writing in The Atlantic:
There’s nothing original in this tale and there’s ample evidence, beyond West, that humans were not built to withstand the weight of celebrity. But for black artists who rise to the heights of Jackson and West, the weight is more, because they come from communities in desperate need of champions. Kurt Cobain’s death was a great tragedy for his legions of fans. Tupac’s was a tragedy for an entire people. When brilliant black artists fall down on the stage, they don’t fall down alone. The story of West “drugged out,” as he put it, reduced by the media glare to liposuction, is not merely about how he feels about his body. It was that drugged-out West who appeared in that gaudy lobby, dead-eyed and blonde-haired, and by his very presence endorsed the agenda of Donald Trump.
I highly recommend reading this entire piece.
Kanye West appears to have announced, via Twitter, that he’ll release his new album on June 1st.
Kanye West interviews his interior designer, Axel Vervoordt, over at The Hollywood Reporter:
The hip-hop mogul interviews his interior designer Axel Vervoordt and reveals his own plans for a philosophy book, thoughts on Virgil Abloh going to Louis Vuitton, and his future goals for the brand: “I don’t wish to be number one anymore, I wish to be water.”
Complex is reporting that Pusha T’s new album will be produced by Kanye West:
Before performing “Crutches, Crosses, Caskets,” he confirmed that King Push is produced top to bottom by Kanye West.
“I had done this album like three times,” he says. “[Kanye] comes in and he picks all the beats and shit. And then, he hear the beats, and he scraps ‘em and says ‘I can do better.’”
TMZ is reporting that Kanye West has ended his relationship with the music service Tidal:
Our sources say a month ago Kanye’s lawyer sent a letter to Tidal, saying the company was in breach and the contract was terminated. Over the next 2 weeks lawyers for both sides tried to resolve the conflict but failed. We’re told 2 weeks ago Kanye’s lawyer fired off a second letter declaring again the contract was over.
Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo has gone platinum:
An album typically goes platinum after selling 1 million copies. But last year the RIAA announced guidelines that would let streaming number contribute to an album’s certified status. They decided that 150 streams of a song would equal one song download, and 10 song downloads would equal one album download. That means an artist’s songs would have to be streamed 1,500 times for it to be counted as an album sale.
So if 1,500 streams equals one album sale, and you multiply that by the 1 million album sales needed to go platinum, you get a minimum requirement of 1.5 billion steams needing to get an album certified platinum.
TMZ is reporting that Kanye West has checked out of the hospital.
We’re told he left the hospital under the care of Kim, and his personal physician, Dr. Michael Farzam … who called 911 the day Kanye was admitted.
Kanye West has canceled all his remaining tour dates.
Kanye West has claimed he’ll boycott the Grammys if Frank Ocean isn’t nominated:
Kanye talked about his love for Ocean’s music, saying, “The album I listen to the most this year is Frank Ocean’s album.” He went on, “I’ll tell you this right now: If his album’s not nominated in no categories, I’m not showin’ up to the Grammys.”
Frank Ocean’s albums were not submitted for consideration.
Vox have created a video looking at how Kanye West’s “human voice” is the central instrument in his music.
TMZ is reporting that Kanye West will be given four minutes at the upcoming VMA awards to do whatever he wants:
A source close to production tells us MTV honchos are giving ‘Ye 4 minutes to do with as he pleases. He can rap, sing, dance or even just stay silent … and we’re told show producers are totally clueless which door he’ll pick.
The Chainsmokers and Halsey have also been announced as performers.
The latest episode of The Sound and the Story podcast is all about Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. This is the show that recently sponsored an episode of our podcast and tells the story of an album with each episode. Apparently next month is Brand New.
Kanye West has released his video for “Wolves.”
I can’t believe that with everything going on in the world right now the internet is parsing words about if Taylor Swift knew, or didn’t know, about specific words in a Kanye West song. But, that’s what the internet is doing. It’s newsworthy enough that I feel it’s worth covering – even if I don’t feel great doing it. Jemima Skelley, writing for Buzzfeed, details what’s happened now that Kim Kardashian has uploaded to Snapchat a phone call Kanye had with Taylor Swift discussing his song “Famous,” a video that does not ever mention the specific portion Taylor Swift apparently had a problem with in the song, but has still tossed the internet into pure chaos:
Though Taylor never denied that she had a conversation with Kanye, it does seem weird that she would publicly call the song misogynistic when she told Kanye that it was a compliment. It does prove, however, that Taylor never actually heard the lyric where Kanye calls her “that bitch”. On the other hand, Kim should have released this right at the beginning of all this drama, instead of holding it to promote her show. Kanye also shouldn’t have recorded Taylor without her permission.
The song bugs me, the video bugs me, and the internet reaction bugs me. Nothing about this feels right.