Kanye West had some time between Tweets to debut another new track from his forthcoming, as-yet-untitled LP on Hot 97 yesterday.
“See Me Now” features MTV VMA nominee Beyonce as well as Gap Band crooner Charlie Wilson over what sounds like a mix between a military celebration march and what could easily be a Coca-Cola commercial. Within minutes after its premiere, he posted it for free download on his website. Stream it and download it below.
While the feel of the song is distinctly different from first single “Power,” it still has the alpha-male swagger, albeit less angry. Ye boasts how he can just stroll into Nobu with no shoes on (even though he also declares his love for boat shoes), likens himself to Socrates (“but my skin more chocolatey”) and tells us something we already know (“I am Lord”). He and Beyonce name-check his late mother Donda; and the rapper, for once, gives a laugh over his Taylor Swift VMAs flap: ““I”m back baby, I’mma let you finish / but I got Beyonce on the track / We the greatest in the world baby.”
Wilson carries the most memorable melodies, but its Beyonce who gets all the tricky parts — which is too bad. In the endlessly vamping outro of this six-minute whopper, Uncle Charlie’s voice soars and tumbles all around the hook, proving that, while Bey can lift up the tune, Wilson is the one who really breaks it down.
It’s a memorable track, though somewhat of a hot mess. The refrain gets a little muddy with all the ad-libbing at the end and it chugs on for too long. Still, it’s a sweet taste of things to come on his album, which is sounding more diverse by the day — particularly since Stereogum is claiming that Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon might be on the set. “Skinny Love Lockdown” perhaps?
Oh, and speaking of the VMAs, it appears that King Kanye has been granted a do-over. MTV has confirmed he’ll be appearing at the Sept. 12 ceremony. And considering Beyonce and Taylor Swift are nominees again this year, expect many a’ camera cutaway to each.