Monday, June 6, 2011

Kanye West goes for gory

On the same day that a government review has called for age-ratings on music videos, Kanye West has unveiled a six-minute gothic horror film which instantly demands an 18 certificate.

Monster is, for me, the standout track on Wests's latest album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. A sparse, schizoid earworm with cameos from Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj and Rick Ross, it's one of the few tracks that doesn't suffer from the record's grandiose production excesses. Clips from the video surfaced back in December, so it's not entirely certain why it's taken so long for the finished product to arrive - although there were rumours that MTV wouldn't show it in its original form.

Featuring a grisly parade of ghouls, vampires, decapitations and deformed bodies, the new edit hardly seems suited for daytime TV, either. Here are a few of the most memorable moments... They're not recommended for the squeamish.

Notably, the video is preceded by a petulant disclaimer "THIS IS AN ART PIECE AND IT SHALL BE TAKEN AS SUCH" which anticipates the inevitable attacks from the conservative media. It also provides a neat echo of Michael Jackson's pre-roll statement in the Thriller video ("this film in no way endorses a belief in the occult") to which Monster owes a considerable stylistic debt.

The video isn't available for embedding - but click on this link to take you to Kanye West's official site for the premiere.

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