A little more than two months ago, Kanye West put fans in a frenzy after tweeting just two words: “June Eighteen,” and now, the date is finally here. Yeezy’s sixth solo LP hit stores on Tuesday (June 18), but his faithful flock aren’t the only ones excited for Yeezus ; Kanye’s fellow rappers are also pumped.
The simplicity of West’s 10-song, no cover disc is actually wrapped around a not-so-simple minimalist musical ideology that he stays true to for the 40-minute ride. Sure he had a little help from pioneering hip-hop producer Rick Rubin, among others, but the progressive nature of the record screams Yeezy. “He got one of the best musical minds, I personally feel, in my generation,” Trinidad James told us of how he looks up to West.
Yeezus impressions are felt way beyond its musical structure. Kanye’s unorthodox album rollout didn’t include a radio plan, a no-no for any hip-hop artist hoping to make a dent in SoundScan. West even declined to release his “New Slaves” video to television or online, instead he just projected the clip onto blank walls at set times in a number of cities and gathered fans in the street to watch.
It’s a risk that not ever rapper can take, and French Montana, for one fully recognizes the creative power that West wields. “For him to drop something the way he did, he’s like, ‘I’m Kanye.’ He can do that,” he said, noting that he wouldn’t even attempt such an innovative roll-out for a non-label release. “For us, that wouldn’t even have been a mixtape.”
For others, Kanye and Yeezus provide inspiration. Young Dro is one of the longest-standing members in T.I.’s Hustle Gang crew, so he’s surely seen a lot being around the King of the South, but ‘Ye’s innovation inspires Dro to reach for even higher heights. “I’m glad that it’s a black brother that really has an impact like that, that we are in touch with in pop culture,” he said. “The whole Yeezy movement, I want to be able to do that someday.”
2 Chainz is one of the lucky ones, though he isn’t signed to Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music, he has been inducted into West’s inner circle. Chainz actually got to witness Yeezus take shape as it was being created and it was an experience that stuck with him. “He’s one of the forefathers of just being creative in production and just taking extra steps and not doing what everybody else is doing,” Deuce said. “Some of that actually rubbed off on me.”