Story by Robert Hansen
Kanye West has thrown me for a loop with the rollout of his upcoming album. It’s a beautiful mystery and I haven’t been this excited about a project from Mr. West in some time.
Earlier this week, I walked into my home after a long day of work and had a moment to chop it up with my mother. It was a joyous occasion, so the mood was light-hearted. I mentioned to her the absurdity of Kanye’s recent antics and how much the internet has been abuzz as the days winded down to February 11. I said, “He’s changed the title of his album three times." It didn’t faze her in the slightest, but, she asked, “What is it now?"
T.L.O.P. I said to her. She paused for a moment. The Life of Parenthood, she responds. I would have never thought of the phrase myself. Why would I? I’m not a father… I am a son, to a woman who has been a mother all of her adult life. It clicks. Am I banking on this being the official title? No, though it does have a ring to it.
We are looking at a different Kanye West. Since the release of Yeezus he has become both a father and a husband, and despite his portrayal in the media, is still a man with thoughts and emotions. With the new revelation of a possible title, songs like "Real Friends" and "No More Parties in L.A." become a lot clearer. They don’t sound as if he’s talking to a child or parenting for that matter, it’s the overall message that stands out. Tending to children isn’t possible if you’re out all night doing who-knows-what. And what parent wouldn’t advise their kids to be mindful of who they associate themselves with?
The Life of Parenthood, or some kind of variation to it, is a nice and natural progression in his body of work. As a fan, we’ve seen Kanye as a student of life (and college), a growing man dealing with romance, death and heartbreak, to reaching full blown God level. I feel he’s making the return to mortality with his new album, regardless of the little I have heard from it.