In the build-up to Tuesday’s release of his new album, some critics are calling Kanye West the first postmodern rapper.
Postmodernity is rap’s DNA: self-referential, sonic decoupage, even self-conscious. You can’t watch or listen to “The Message” without feeling this in your bones. That the Old School was also sincere is a bonus.
Modernity bred racism and slavery. Rap deconstructs (Bad Boy videos of the late 90s, focused so thoroughly on image, not withstanding). I haven’t even said Busta, Missy, or Beasties, yet.