From the first surface view, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy or MBDTF is a 10-year-old spelunking trip filled with creases of immense layering and depth beyond measure. Each track demands its own whole page write up for the amount of detail and polish. Starting off with the incredible lyricism over “Gorgeous” with the simple, but unforgettable instrumental that features both Kid Cudi and Raekwon, a team-up never imagined to work. West on MBDTF is this orchestral mastermind of jigsaw pieces that should on paper, never click; but somehow become a place of comfortable residence.
West is acting with this onslaught of Alpha and Omega verse alignment that can combine a coherent story that becomes more relevant with age. He describes, “Penitentiary chances, the devil dances and eventually answers to the call of Autumn. All of them falling for the love of balling, got caught with 30 rocks, the cop look like Alec Baldwin. Inter-century anthems based off inner-city tantrums based off the way we was branded.” He continues on to illustrate, “Face it, Jerome get more time than Brandon and at the airport, they check all through my bag and tell me that it’s random.” Where his lyrical output is at some of his best in his career, West also relies heavily on the production, and MBDTF is a record that can survive off the instrumentation alone.
Keeping the writing of this record under 10,000 words is difficult as every track on the composition has something meaningful, even if certain tracks stand out much better than others. This is one of the closest displays to a perfect music piece that there can be. Not to feed an ego that already was at the time, bigger than life itself, but West is a genius that even if now his music does not speak to the same crowd or invoke that same feeling or emotion, his career spans as a testament to the beauty of endurance and ability.
But one of the tracks that is perpetually on repeat is “Lost In The World” and the transitional “Who Will Survive In America” that go hand-in-hand together with this perfect percussive performance and poetic slam fest. “Lost In The World” features Bon Iver and the two are able to create this almost tribal styled chant that echoes off of each other and bounces around. The chorus which describes, “I’m lost in the world, been down my whole life. I’m new in the city and I’m down for the night,” is somehow hopeful as this rebuilding pushback that floods into “Who Will Survive In America.”
Gil-Scott Heron has the last words on MBDTF, describing, “America was a bastard, the illegitimate daughter of the mother country. Whose legs were then spread around the world, and a rapist known as freedom; free-doom, democracy, liberty, and justice were revolutionary code names.” The final words that refrain comes to shout, “Who will survive in America? Who will survive in America? Who will survive in America? Who will survive in America?” before all instrumentals cease and the storybook closes to end one of the most powerful exhibitions of sound to ever grace from man’s hands.