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Due to the amount of hate and criticism Kanye West gets, for which he has only himself to blame, for the vast majority of people he is just a pompous, egotistical, douchebag. But the man is a musical genius, and no, this is not Kanye West writing this article, it’s just the truth. This list of best Kanye West songs ranked will assure you of that if you heavily dislike him and just regard him as a gay fish. You’ll probably still think that he is douche, but a vastly talented one.
The 39-year old has eight studio albums on his record, The College Dropout (2004), Late Registration (2005), Graduation (2007), 808s & Heartbreak (2008), My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010), Watch The Throne (2011), Yeezus (2013), and The Life of Pablo (2016), so choosing the best 15 tracks was a difficult, but rewarding task. Luckily, you just get to enjoy in these pioneering instrumentals and enticing flows.
Best Kanye West Songs Ranked
15. No Church In The Wild ft. Frank Ocean and The-Dream(Watch the Throne)
It’s truly not a phrase to say that it was extremely difficult to make this 15 best Kanye West songs list, try it for yourself and see, and the No Church in the Wild gets to start us off as it stylistically combines the new and the old Kanye. The beat evokes the era of the Yeezy’s rise to the very top when #2 and #6 of the list were dropping, while the vocals and the topics are more fitting with the Kanye after 808s and Heartbreak. It also signals a very important trait of Kanye’s creation, and that is that all of his videos are distinctive and ambitious as they come, throughout the genres.
14. Gold Digger ft Jamie Foxx (Late Registration)
One of the most recognizable and the most liked Kanye West songs, due to the touching on a sensitive, relevant topic. But also due to the charming performance of the multitalented Jamie Foxx and the funniest lyrics Kanye ever wrote in his lyrics book. The instrumental seems both pretty plain and rich at the same and it contains samples of Ray Charles’ I Got a Woman, which gives an aroma of classiness to this sort off goofy track.
13. Runaway ft. Pusha T (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy)
You can easily listen to Runaway, love it and then have you mind blown when you find out it’s performed by Kanye West. The majority of the track sounds like the new indie rocks band breakout anthem, it’s only when the very interesting, specific-Kanye relevant rapping starts that you see it’s a hip hop track. The minimalistic piano instrumental combined with the almost techno like noises creeping in the background of the beat is as haunting as the challenging lyrics.
12. Amazing ft. Young Jeezy (808s and Heartbreak)
Worthy of an epic movie score, Amazing is definitely the most finessed and elegant hype up song ever. So much so, that it’s surprising not every fighter or athlete use it in their pre-match buildup. Truly an 808s and Heartbreak song in its style, with the combined usage of the basses and the dignified piano, Amazing has the subtle chorus almost throughout it that give it just enough to make a totally unique sound. Also, Young Jeezy cuts the with the shocking raspiness of his voice and reminding us that we’re still on a rap artist album.
11. I Wonder (Graduation)
It’s hard to understand how a song with such a chopped off, aggressive flow can be so inspiring and motivating. One of those Graduation tracks that is certain to give you goose bumps, and while the tone of Kanye’s rapping is hard, it’s definitely not dark like the newer stuff. Signature vocal-instrumental is illuminating as one can get, and while it’s not one of the more popular tracks of Kanye’s best album, it’s certainly a hidden gem and a track perfect for introducing people to the old Kanye.
10. Heartless (808s and Heartbreak)
Kanye should really at least be respected for the ability to utilize autotune in his songs without the listener wanting to punch himself in the ear or at least to feel the cringe. The heartbreak part of the critically acclaimed 808s and Heartbreak is the most real pop love song that has been released, arguably, ever. It focuses on the dark, internal side of break ups, not on the romanticized, movie-like sacrificess the singer usually goes through in the more traditional versions of pop music.
9. All Of The Lights ft. Rihanna, Kid Cudi (My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy)
Fusing the sophisticated classical instruments like piano, horns, and violin with the high-paced synth electronic beats resulted in one of the most uplifting tracks of Kanye’s career, arguably Rihanna’s too. But she and Kid Cudi aren’t the only artists whose vocals were used in this club anthem, John Legend, The-Dream, Elly Jackson, Alicia Keys, Fergie, Elton John, Drake, were also involved with the track. The cleanest Rihanna’s chorus ever is beyond inspiring, almost worthy of the epileptic seizure you’ll sure to have if you watch the video.
8. New Slaves (Yeezus)
The ballsy, unapologetic, raw, powerful, unique track would be regarded as a revolutionary anthem in the protests happening now if it wasn’t for the fact it was made by the 2013, hated Kanye. He did bring the hate onto himself, and he is often contradictory in his actions to the message of this song, but he has to get his props for daring to show his teeth out to the system, a thing unheard of for all the other successful rappers. Also, done way better than the ones that made their underground names on similar tracks, while also seeming more sincere.