Kanye West hears the criticisms against him, but he won’t back down. That’s the message of his new single, “Wash Us In The Blood,” featuring Travis Scott, which he released today after teasing the new song in his return to Twitter earlier this week. The song is accompanied with a surrealist music video which incorporates CGI animation, social media video clips from recent protests against police brutality, and home movie footage from what looks like a church concert in the ’90s.
“Wash Us In The Blood” is prime latter-day Kanye, based around a gospel-inspired chant evoking the blood of Jesus, imagery that appears repeatedly in the Bible and in the music of Black American churches. Despite opening the video with images from protests against police brutality, it appears Kanye has a broader agenda, as both the lyrics and the video reference the social cost of gang culture, as well as Kanye’s prior comments on slavery. However, it sounds like Kanye expects some controversy, as he raps over the bridge, “They don’t want Kanye to be Kanye / They wanna sign a fake Kanye / They wanna sign a ‘Calm-ye.'” As the first single from Kanye’s upcoming album, God’s Country, it’s an intriguing glimpse at what’s to come.
If Kanye won’t calm down, at least he has plenty to keep himself busy. Earlier this week, he announced a 10-year partnership with The Gap, while Kid Cudi shared a teaser of the duo’s upcoming Kids See Ghosts animated sow.
Listen to Kanye West’s “Wash Us In The Blood” featuring Travis Scott above.