Watching the Throne: A Lyrical Analysis of Kanye West

This is an in-depth-yet-entertaining dive into the lyrics and narrative artistry of Kanye West's music. We go track by track through Ye's discography, revealing the narrative and poetic techniques he uses, tracking his growth as a storyteller, and illuminating the narratives behind Yeezus and The Life of Pablo. For Kanye fans, this might be the Ye-centric lyrical discussion you've been waiting for. For musicians and writers, this is practical insight into how one of the best storytellers in music history does what he does. We also have a news show about Kanye, Kim, North, Saint, and Jay-Z. We look at the top 5 posts from Reddit's Kanye community, r/Kanye. And discuss other relevant Ye topics. And there's our interview series, My StorYe, where we interview people about their relationship with Kanye West. We hope you enjoy!
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Watching the Throne: A Lyrical Analysis of Kanye West




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Now displaying: 2016
Dec 27, 2016

Was you saying something? Was you telling Chris and Travis that spending hours upon hours talking about Kanye West was a waste of time? Was you scoffing at their analytical dive into Can't Tell Me Nothing? Was you denying the song's idyllic, yet ironic portrait of fame and fortune as the album Graduation digs the character of Kanye deeper and deeper until he's completely alienated from his friends, family and hometown of Chicago? Was you saying something???

Uh-uh you can't tell them NOTHING.

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Dec 20, 2016

Go on and celebrate Christmas all you want—Chris and Travis have upgraded to ChristmaHanuKwanzaakah. 

That's right! It's time for an absurdly long lyrical analysis of Christmas in Harlem, Kanye West's one and only stab at a creating a classic Christmas jingle. They're breaking down all eight verses from Kanye and his friends that we can only assume were recorded in Hawaii while Kanye was making one of the greatest albums of all time. Kinda crazy when you think about it, huh?

Dec 16, 2016

This week, Chris and Travis are talking about the two biggest blondes dominating the news cycle at the moment: Donald Trump and Kanye West. They gauge the public's reaction to the meeting and discuss if there is a chance for diplomacy with Trump. They also talk about Kanye's new medical team, his side career in BMXing, Kim Kardashian's Love Magazine photoshoot, and the top 20 TV shows Kanye should appear in. Oh, and J. Cole updates, of course.

Dec 13, 2016

Miss the old Kanye? Well, you're in luck, because today Chris and Travis are discussing Roses from his second album, Late Registration. They observe the middle ground Kanye exists on between fame and family (which foreshadows The Life of Pablo), his amazing use of setting and imagery, and the narrative journey he takes to make that final line so iconic.

Dec 9, 2016

While most podcasts cover a wide array of subjects—such as crime, sports, or perhaps even an entire genre of music—there's only one topic near and dear to Chris and Travis's heart: Whatever the hell Kanye West is up to. And this week has no shortage of news to speculate about. They discuss Kanye's Grammy nominations, his new blonde hair, the insane Kimye divorce rumors, Saint West's first birthday, J. Cole riding the bus and getting prescription glasses—and, of course, possibly our first real piece of Turbo Grafx 16 news.

Dec 6, 2016

The lights dimmed as Chris and Travis joined hands and formed a prayer circle, begging for the strength to cover one of Kanye West's most insane tracks. As the lights raised, so did the WTT crew, ready to discuss Low Lights and Highlights, the shift they represent for Kanye's internal struggle on The Life of Pablo, and the vulnerability resting beneath the superficiality of it all.

Dec 2, 2016

Breaking from the format, Chris and Travis are doing something they've never done before: covering a song that does NOT feature Kanye West.

Well...sort of. As rumor has it, Kanye could very well be the subject of J. Cole's latest single, False Prophets, and WTT is ready to give it the same level of scrutiny and analysis they would give to any Kanye song. They talk about the narrative J. Cole is forming, how his perceptions of Kanye fit in with the Old vs. New Kanye argument, and ultimately what the song is saying about "false prophets."

Nov 30, 2016

Chris and Travis need a little help tackling one of Kanye West's most complex, beautiful, and tragic (and underrated!) songs, so they've enlisted Jordan to help break down Hold My Liquor. They cover the old/new Kanye dynamic playing out on the track, how "the woman" and "the aunt" come to metaphorically represent various aspects of Kanye's life, and how the song fits in with the narrative of Yeezus.

Nov 27, 2016

The question has truly reached its peak this week, yet Chris and Travis still don't have a clear answer for it: Why do people hate Kanye West so much? They attempt to address the question while discussing the details Kanye's recent hospitalization for sleep deprivation and picking apart his speech at the Sacramento concert.

Nov 22, 2016

Chris and Travis always wondered what song would break the two-hour barrier—seems fitting that mass confusion over Jay Z's verse in Monster did the trick. Janie and Jordan join the WTT crew to help make sense of one of the most insane guest verses on a Kanye West track, all the while gushing over Nicki Minaj's legendary spaz-out and fitting the song onto My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy's narrative.

Nov 19, 2016

The public hasn't so collectively and vehemently lashed out at Kanye in a while, and Chris and Travis are here to take stock of Kanye admitting he "would've voted for Donald Trump." They break down the speech and get at the root of what Kanye was saying. Also, Kanye wants Will Ferrell to play him in a movie, Kim discusses having a third child with Kanye and exploring surrogacy, and Jay Z reveals the surprising person he wrote in for president.

Nov 15, 2016

bum bum bum bum...bum bum bum bum...They're still loving Ye...The way they wanted to...What they had to do...Had to talk again...They're in love him with...And the vibe is right...And it drove them...To an hour and 17 minutes...THEY'RE TALKIN' LOVE LOCKDOWN, IT'S LOVE LOCKDOWN, THEY'RE TALKIN' LOVE LOCKDOWN, BY KANYE WEST, THEY'RE TALKIN' LOVE LOCKDOWN, LOVE LOCKDOWN—

you lose

you lose

you lose

we all lose

This episode is brought to you by two white dudes with too much time on their hands.

Nov 11, 2016

In the wake of a Donald Trump presidential victory, Chris and Travis present a very election-themed episode. They discuss Kanye West's chances of becoming president in 2020, what the public reaction might look like, who he'd appoint to his cabinet, and much more. All of this is followed, of course, with Jay Z news, Kim Kardashian updates, and the state of r/kanye.

Nov 8, 2016

Like we do at this time, we go for ours, we gots to shine☀️ and we bout to hop a plane ✈️ and travel the world 🇦🇺 🇨🇳 🇩🇪 and go on a living spree 💰 because the best things in life are free and we don't paid to do this podcast 🎧  so talking about Kanye 💽 is pretty much all we have so please bare 🐻 with us as we try to make sense of one of Kanye West's most ridiculous songs (Good Life 👀) while still living to see another day 🙈 🙉 🙊.

This episode is brought to you by EasterxSunday and emoticons.

Oct 28, 2016

"Man, Jay, they don't really want no problems—BUT WE DO." 

That's right, Kanye West and Jay Z are (more than likely) beefing with each other and Chris and Travis are here with the details. They also cover the weird song Drake released about Kid Cudi, the mid-season premiere of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and what they'd do on a camping trip with Kanye. Real important stuff, here.

Oct 25, 2016

Put that iPod on your tongue...yeah, that's pure, man! That's right, this episode is 100% certifiably wavy 🏄🏻 🏄🏻 🏄🏻 and Chris and Travis got the chops to prove it. This lyrical analysis of Crack Music will cover all the great things about Old Kanye, like deep wordplay, stark imagery, and a grand call to action that posits Kanye West as the next Gil Scott-Heron. 

Oct 21, 2016

With all the negativity weighing everyone down in recent weeks, it's time to celebrate one truly magnificent woman—the one, the only, Kim Noel Kardashian West. Chris and Travis (and Anna!) cover their favorite Kim moments, from her Snapchatting to her foray into club music to Kimojis to her absurd crying faces to her just goddamn killing it as a mother.

🙌 All hail one half of the bad-ass-est couple on the planet 🙌

Oct 18, 2016

They don't really want no problems—but damn, Chris and Travis got about 99 of em for the latest track off The Life of Pablo. While a great song, Feedback probably gives the WTT crew its biggest headache yet, sending them into a stupor over who the "father" is, what the "motto" might be, and why it matters at all that Kanye is a "south sider." Mixed within that confusion, however, is a very (as Chris and Travis would like to think) thoughtful analysis of Feedback and how Kanye West is building the idea of WHICH/ONE by going full god-mode in the form of Dennis Rodman (it'll all make sense later—they promise).

Oct 14, 2016

It's official: The entire WTT crew has seen the Saint Pablo Tour, and they're here to discuss their highs and lows (jk, there are no lows!). Chris, Travis, and Anna get deep into show's design, setlist, and merch, while also providing an extensive update of Kim Kardashian since the robbery, what Jay Z has been up to with his new best friend, and the top five posts of the Kanye subreddit.

Oct 12, 2016

There's a reason Chris and Travis love Yeezus so much—and New Slaves is pretty much that reason. They're here to convince you why the song is so important to not only the narrative of the album, but to the narrative of Kanye West as a whole, and what the idea of being a "new slave" represents to his body of work. Expect plenty of comparisons to Adam Sandler movies, There Will Be Blood, Akira, and that Alanis Morissette song that had everybody confused about what "irony" meant for a while.

Oct 7, 2016

The topics get real this week as Chris and Travis try to make sense of the disgusting reactions to the news that Kim Kardashian was robbed in Paris. While they also discuss Kid Cudi checking into rehab, they eventually cover some lighter subjects, like North seeing Matilda the Musical, Ringo Starr being super wavy, and the time Jay Z and his new best friend built a treehouse in his backyard. In addition to it all, Chris opens up about a potentially troubling piece of news the WTT crew received last week.

This episode is brought to you by EasterxSunday.

Oct 4, 2016

Shhhhhhh try not to wake up mom...

That's right, it's STORYE TIME (dude shut up!) and Janie Contreras Johnson (guess who she's married to!) is joining Chris and Travis's latest WTT slumber party to tell them about her journey with Kanye West. From the Hurricane Katrina relief special (cringe-worthy!) to her feminist beliefs regarding Kanye (and Bukowski!) to her top five Ye tracks (with a surprise No. 1!), Janie is proving she's more than just a woman—she's her husband's wife (ok—it's Jordan!).

Oct 1, 2016

Better call Becky with the good hair, because SHE'S A HE (BUM BUM BUMMMMMM).

That is just one of the many revelations that occur on today's Kanye West news episode, as Travis, Jordan, and Janie dive deep into the week that was Kanye, Jay Z, and Kim. They cover Kanye's flight to Paris and his new Instagram account, Kim's crazy-but-awesome see-through dress, and the best of the Kanye subreddit. They also do some live investigative reporting and uncover a BOMBSHELL relating to Jay Z's body double and his relation with Chris.

Sep 28, 2016

To cover all of the lights, we need all of the resources—Chris, Travis, (introducing) Janie Contreras Johnson. Who knows, if they get desperate, they'll enlist Genius for its annotations?

No...they would never!

jk, they totally do. In fact, they pull out all the stops to cover one of Kanye West's most infamous tracks, All of the Lights. They discuss fame, fortune, family, MJ, Tupac, the pros and cons of Borders vs. Barnes & Noble, and all of the different kinds of lights that exist. You can expect Janie to say smart things, and for Chris and Travis to talk about iPhones, high schoolers working at movie theaters, and Joe Dirt.

This episode is brought to you by EasterxSunday.

Sep 20, 2016

Does Kanye West say the word "amazing" over 60 times? Yes. Is he using the word ironically? It's up for interpretation...but probably. Do Chris and Travis talk about Hot Pockets and Gatorade? Of course. Is Young Jeezy a crazy person? Without a doubt. Is Kanye comparing his reign as the world's most controversial hip hop star to the decline and hollowness of the Ozymandias empire? Let's answer that question with another question: DO WE NEED AIR TO BREATHE?

Will WTT cover all that and more in their analysis of Amazing? Bet ur butt they do.

This episode is sponsored by EasterxSunday.

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