Kanye West has earned many accolades throughout his career, but his latest isn’t something he’ll be shouting from the rooftops about.
The controversial Chicago rapper was awarded the No. 1 spot on Rolling Stone’s 50 Genuinely Horrible Albums By Brilliant Artists list for his 2018 album Ye, which writers at the publication said “marked the beginning of the most disastrous artistic and personal collapse in the history of popular music.”
“Clocking in at a mere 23 minutes, the chaotic, half-baked album was cut in Wyoming right around the time he told TMZ that slavery was a ‘choice’ and started wearing a MAGA hat in public,” Rolling Stone wrote.
“The uproar over his slavery remark caused him to rework many of the ye lyrics over a frantic two weeks shortly before the album dropped, which explains screeds like ‘Just imagine if they caught me on a wild day/ Now I’m on 50 blogs gettin’ 50 calls/ My wife callin’, screamin’, say, ‘We ’bout to lose it all.’’
They concluded: “The Kanye scandals of 2018 seem almost quaint compared to his recent issues, but he’s never made music less vital than this.”
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Elsewhere on the list, Lil Wayne’s rock-infused 2010 album Rebirth also snagged No. 24, with the RS writers calling the project the work of a “vocally challenged genius stuck in limbo.” RUN DMC’s 2001 effort Crown Royal also appeared at No. 27, with RS describing the tape “as a colossal bomb.”
They also placed OutKast’s Idelwild soundtrack at No. 46, calling the tape the product of a “creatively exhausted duo” that were “desperate to go their separate ways.”
Despite Ye’s number-one placement, it was announced in 2021 that ye had still exceeded a billion streams on Spotify.
Kanye’s placement on the list also comes amidst announcements the 49-year-old’s most recent string of antisemitic comments will be the focus of a new BBC documentary tentatively titled We Need to Talk About Kanye. The one-off documentary will follow award-winning journalist Mobeen Azhar as he wrestles with Ye’s current place in pop culture following his series of antisemitic outbursts last year.
The new film arrives as Kanye gears up for another presidential run in 2024, and will examine Ye’s “complex journey” from adoration and acclaim to “condemnation and notoriety.”
We Need to Talk About Kanye will air on BBC 2 with Stefan Mattison on board as the primary director. A premiere date is expected to be announced in the coming months.