Kanye West's new song is already a meme and I don't Love It

Commentary: Welcome to 2018, where music is made for internet points.

Claire Reilly Former Principal Video Producer
Claire Reilly was a video host, journalist and producer covering all things space, futurism, science and culture. Whether she's covering breaking news, explaining complex science topics or exploring the weirder sides of tech culture, Claire gets to the heart of why technology matters to everyone. She's been a regular commentator on broadcast news, and in her spare time, she's a cabaret enthusiast, Simpsons aficionado and closet country music lover. She originally hails from Sydney but now calls San Francisco home.
Expertise Space, Futurism, Science and Sci-Tech, Robotics, Tech Culture Credentials
  • Webby Award Winner (Best Video Host, 2021), Webby Nominee (Podcasts, 2021), Gold Telly (Documentary Series, 2021), Silver Telly (Video Writing, 2021), W3 Award (Best Host, 2020), Australian IT Journalism Awards (Best Journalist, Best News Journalist 2017)
Claire Reilly
3 min read

Kanye West and Lil Pump are very extra.

Youtube screenshot by Claire Reilly/CNET

It's time for a new Kanye track!

"Hell yeah!" I hear you say. "Who's producing? Who does it feature? How does it compare to College Dropout?"

Slow down, GRANDPA. It's 2018. Music is meaningless now. We're here for the memes.

If you missed the latest act in the durational performance art piece that is 2018 Kanye West , Yeezy released a new track called "I Love It" on Friday, featuring Lil Pump and Adele Givens. The song is middling on the first listen, but with an earworm of a hook that you'll struggle to shift from the very primal part of your brain.

But that's OK, because this isn't a song. It's pure meme.

Warning: The video below is definitely NSFW. 

Kanye and Pump are dressed up in giant foam shirt suits (and what I swear must be the same orthopaedic shuffle-slides that come standard in any nursing home), they're bopping like giant toddlers and chasing Givens down a corridor full of naked, cling film-wrapped women.

And the internet is Living. For. It.

This didn't come out of nowhere. The clip's executive producer was Spike Jonze -- Being John Malkovich Spike Jonze -- who used the following completely real sketches as part of his storyboard, according to Vice.

In 2018, getting cut-through isn't about getting more radio air time or plays on MTV. It's about internet points and upvotes. 

In Kanye and Pump's case, you dress up like Roblox characters -- wearing oversized outfits to look like the blocky, Minecraft-esque characters from a game that half the world's kids are playing right now. And then, just to test the YouTube supervision skills of the parents of those kids, you fill that Roblox world with nudes and launch the clip at the PornHub awards.

A YouTube film clip imitating a kids' game launched at an awards night for a porn website. Your college semiotics textbooks really didn't prepare you for this.

In the beforetimes, we used to buy records and devour the liner notes. Or we'd download albums and race to the internet to ingest the lyrics as quickly as possible.

Now, your liner notes are on r/Kanye. 

"I Love It" barely lived life as a song -- just days after its release it was on Know Your Meme and I'd already seen it on a "What to wear for Halloween 2018" list of costume ideas.

Watching (yes watching) Kanye's latest track isn't about the music. It's a defensive play to stay ahead of the latest memes. You don't need to spend a week with this. Hell, you don't need to listen to the whole two minutes. All you need is a fluency in pop culture , access to MS Paint and the mouse speed to get your meme out to the internet hive mind as quickly as possible.

You could make a meme where those hogtied, limbless nudes reference Princess Mombi from Return to Oz and our creeping acceptance of objectified, dismembered female bodies.

JK. I wouldn't suggest that. I Love It.

CNET has contacted Kanye West and the Roblox team for comment.

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