Kanye afford it

An open letter. “Dear Mark Zukerberg. Please send me, at your earliest convenience, a $1bn investment to extend this column into a 32-page weekly entertainment pullout with a free covermount 7” single. If this proves profitable I may have some left over which I will use to achieve my aims of getting hammered on Cristal champagne.”

Of course, it could be my plea this doesn’t make it past the Facebook chief’s spam filters. Certainly, Kanye West’s desperate attempt to finance his $53m (FIFTY-THREE MILLION) debt seems to have fallen on deaf ears. “You love hip hop, you love my art…” said the self-confident rapper, rather presumptuously given that Zuckerberg’s musical taste seems to lean more towards white boys with guitars (he even had Billie Joe out of Green Day play at his wedding).

But loathe him or hate him, you can’t keep Yeezy out of the music columns. He’s asked that ‘white’ press refrain from writing about ‘coloured’ music (not this column specifically, though Rolling Stone was mentioned). Indeed, he’d like white publications to butt out of black music completely, oh, unless it involves internet billionaires donating spare change to finance ‘ideas’ and ‘art’ rather than squandering it on, say, schools in Africa.

In fact, it’s a shame for those trying to make sense of his latest meanderings that all his column inches have arrived in one dose, as next week we may have to go back to writing about Morrissey again. Coincidentally Kayne has a new album out. ‘The Life of Pablo’ – named, surely, after dub legend Augustus Pablo – has already been heavily pirated, so we all know what he thinks of “that bitch” Taylor Swift, as the lost sales eat into his personal misfortune. Maybe he should abandon the internet before he really gets himself into trouble.

Of course, West is merely a figure of fun, and not nearly as dangerous as Donald Trump (though if he does run for president of the US in 2020, who knows?) For now however, another man with an ego to match his inability on all things online, Martin Shkreli – the most hated man outwith ISIS? – has offered Kanye $10m for ‘Pablo’. This would mean that West’s new release never sees the light of day. And from first listens to ‘Pablo’ it’d be a service to humanity, though Kanye does at least generate some interest in his choice of samples – Sister Nancy, Nina Simone, Goldfrapp and oddest of all, Section 25 – one of the less-feted Factory Records bands, the royalties will be welcome even if their boss, the profligate Tony Wilson, never quite managed to get $53M in debt.

Shkreli already owns the rights to the Wu Tang Clan’s Once Upon a Time in Shaolin. though fortunately the contract does offer the option of an ‘intervention’ by Bill Murray. Anyway, the man formerly best known for hiking up the price of AIDS drug Daraprim by 5500 per cent mistook a shady character called Daquan – probably a Nigerian prince – for Kayne’s man and deposited $15m in Bitcoins, straight into a black hole. He then topped this piece of financial Darwinism by, while trying to save face in a webchat, displaying his credit card details, allowing someone to use his number to send him 55 gallons of (ahem) ‘lubricant’.

Meanwhile, I’m crossing fingers that Shkreli fancies squandering his ill-gotten gains on music unique to his ears some more. I believe Phil Collins has a new album on the way…

Plastic Animals – Picture From The Blackout (Song, by Toad)
An album several years in the making, this debut from this Edinburgh quartet is well worth the wait. OPening with perhaps the poppoest tune of the nine, ‘Ghosts’ is a toe-tapping yet laid-back piece of shinnery alt.pop harking back to The Chameleons or even Echo and the Bunnymen. ‘Colophone’ follows, a robotioc guitar-based instrumental, driving music for the Tesla generation. Things calm down slightly afterwards, as explosive soundscapes are swapped for shoegazing, although ‘Burial Party’ has some nicely meandering guitar and closer ‘Holy Daze’ with its towering harmonies truly deserves the description “climactic”.

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