Jesus Is King Review

Wake up Mr. West, the fans want another album. The fans need another project, they need a real album, they’re dying…

This was the thought of every Kanye West fan immediately after Ye (2018) was released. Ye was a short project to keep fans from getting angry at Kanye for not dropping anything. The project before that, The Life of Pablo, came out in 2016 and that isn’t a long time in between studio albums. Ye was a demo or a distraction from a real Kanye West project. Mr. West also dropped a duo album with Kid Cudi titled KIDS SEE GHOSTS, immediately after releasing Ye. Coincidentally, both of the albums had a length of 7 songs totalling at 23 minutes, which is very odd.

On the other hand, Jesus Is King has only 4 more songs that one of those albums and only adds 4 more minutes to the total length. Thus, totalling Jesus Is King’s length at 27 minutes with 11 songs. 

This isn’t too shabby of an album from a beloved artist such as Kanye West. Also, the album is entirely gospel themed which isn’t like “the old Kanye” and this version of West is very new to fans. West’s theme for some songs in his lengthy career included Christianity but it wasn’t an entire project that is theme.

Kanye West’s long awaited Jesus Is King project hit streaming services on October 25, 2019, people didn’t enjoy it. People are completely split with this drastic change in West’s genre of music. Even with this change, the album still holds true to something Mr. West does best, production. His excellent production saves this album.

Opening up the album is “Every Hour” with the sensational Sunday Service Choir voice. It’s just like God is beaming down on you when you listen to this song. “Sing ‘til the power of the Lord comes down” echoes throughout my mind after listening to this song once and it makes me want to listen over and over. This song awakens the audience to a common thing that churches have, and that’s a choir. “Every Hour” is a great opener for the gospel themed album and the next song “Selah” further prove Ye’s understanding of the Bible. Selah is actually a word that is used throughout the Bible and has no definable meaning. Most people believe the word is supposed to mean “to lift up.” In this case, “Selah”, as it’s titled, is to bring religious upbringing. Hallelujah is repeated a lot behind crunching drum slams definitely lifting the audience. It’s a really powerful song. The project’s production is definitely saving this “Ultralight Beam” of an album.

Next up on the list is “Follow God” and it’s the most Kanye esque song on the entire album. He’s rapping in and out of the song with an old sample repeating in the background. He sampled Whole Truth’s “Can You Lose by Following God” and used a line where the song says “Father, I stretch, stretch my hands to you.” “Follow God” revisits the spiritual themes of his The Life of Pablo (2016) song, “Father Stretch My Hands, Pt. 1.” West discusses his struggles of trying to live a religious life and follow God’s direction in the Jesus Is King track.

The rest of the album is mostly Kanye singing and there is nothing special about the songs. A few exceptions to this are “On God” where critically acclaimed producer Pi’erre Bourne produces the track and “God Is” where West uses a sample of choir in the background while he sings on the track. These two tracks have great production and save the album. “God Is” has West’s rarely seen singing voice and it’s absolutely amazing. Other than these mere good tracks, Mr. West shares several other mediocre songs, weakening the total value of the album.

Overall, the album had a few great songs or “bangers” and the rest of the album was too gospel for my liking. However, relistening to some of the songs again, I’m able to withstand the songs more and more greatly increasing the quality of the album. In the end, the album is at best a 7/10, but not worth the long wait for a big project by the beloved Kanye West. Kanye West has finally lost his mind maybe.