Though largely hailed as one of the game’s most innovative artists, it’s not exactly common to see Kanye West praised for his bars. Yet five years ago, Yeezy released one of the best verses of his career on The Life Of Pablo single “No More Parties In L.A.” In fact, Ye’s verse was so strong that he may very well have done the impossible, which is to say outshining his collaborator Kendrick Lamar — not exactly an easy feat, given Kendrick’s status as one of the greatest emcees of all time.
True, it’s probably more debatable than concrete — but still, it can’t be denied that Kanye didn’t bring his A-Game over the Madlib produced banger. Following Kendrick’s spastic reflection on the wild and breakneck pace of the Los Angeles party scene, Kanye slides in with an emcees hunger, a move that sparked a collective cheer from his legions of still-loyal fans. “My psychiatrist got kids that I inspired, first song they played for me was ’bout their friend that just died,” he raps, stringing together a clever flow scheme. “I be worried ’bout my daughter, I be worried ’bout Kim / But Saint is baby ‘Ye, I ain’t worried ’bout him.”
A healthy mix of personal reflection, biting humor, and self-awareness, Kanye’s performance on “No More Parties In LA” deserves recognition as his most compelling performance of the past decade — show some love to the Life Of Pablo highlight now, and be sure to sound off with your thoughts on this modern classic duet.
I be thinkin’ every day
Mulholland Drive need to put up some goddamn barricades
I be paranoid every time, the pressure
The problem ain’t I be drivin’, the problem is I be textin’
My psychiatrist got kids that I inspired
First song they played for me was ’bout their friend that just died
Textin’ and drivin’ down Mulholland Drive
That’s why I’d rather take the 405
I be worried ’bout my daughter, I be worried ’bout Kim
But Saint is baby ‘Ye, I ain’t worried ’bout him