Nut Ink. Mini reviews of texts old and new. No fuss. No plot spoilers. No adverts. Occasional competency.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Through the Wire: Lyrics & Illuminations (2009)

Author: Kanye West | Illustrator: Bill Plypton | Page Count: 79

Huh? Y'all eat pieces of shit? What's the basis? 
We ain't going nowhere but got suits and cases.

I picked it up for 99p in clearance because it had Bill Plypton art. I left the store feeling like I’d cheated the owners by paying so little. I think we both got lucky and unlucky that day.

I’d heard the name Kanye West but had no idea what he did or didn’t do. He’s a hip-hop ‘artist,’ apparently. That places him very far from the field I normally graze in. I haven’t heard his music and I have no wish to. His lyrics are abysmal; fourth grade poetry has more meaningful content than this fucking drivel. See above quote for a very fine example of Mr West’s poetical talent.

Each song is briefly annotated with an autobiographical anecdote in what most of us call the English language, which is a mercy.

Celebrated artist Bill Plypton illustrates the lyrics of twelve songs that collectively tell the tale of Kanye’s rise from a college drop-out to a college drop-out that learned how to hold a microphone. Plypton illustrates with his usual distinctive style; the sketchy pencil lines, the crosshatched colouring pencils and the dynamic perspectives are are all here. The illustrations are often blackly humorous, full of religious motifs and political musings.

I console myself with the knowledge that I got some cool Plympton art to admire, and pray it won't be long until my ageing brain forgets the Kanye West portion.

0 points for trying out of 5 for Kanye. | 5 wicked grins out of 5 for Bill.