"Power" (CD single)

Music review by
Stephanie Bruzzese, Common Sense Media
"Power" (CD single) Music Poster Image
Popular with kids
West uses swearing, violence to lash out at his critics.

Parents say

age 2+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 15 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

West is bent on crushing his critics in this song, using a lot of strong, explicit language and mature metaphors about his greatness.

Positive Role Models & Representations

With his continual public outbursts (like interrupting Taylor Swift's acceptance speech at the VMAs), West is hardly a model of good behavior.

Violence

End of the song repeats a line several times about committing suicide by jumping out a window -- and the CD cover shows a severed (cartoon) head. 

Sex
Language

Tons (and tons) of the f-word, as well as other words like "p---y" and" n---a."

Consumerism

No product names, but mention of "furs and ice [diamonds]".

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One line about drinking and driving.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this song is in no way meant for young kids. It includes tons of hardcore swearing, along with some disturbing imagery that Kanye West uses to support his perceived superiority. For example, "At the end of day, Goddamnit, I’m killin’ this s--t / I know damn well y’all feelin’ this s--t / I don’t need yo’ p--sy, bitch, I’m on my own d--k." The end of the song repeats a line several times about committing suicide
by jumping out a window -- and the CD cover shows a severed (cartoon)
head.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJared Galczynski May 27, 2014

A good enough rapper, but he's right...

"No One Man Should Have All That Power!"
Teen, 14 years old Written byspeyan727 September 11, 2018
Teen, 14 years old Written byCooltiger37 July 8, 2018

Great rap song is relatively teen-friendly; edited version still slightly edgy

Yes, there is a lot of profanity in this song, but the overall anti-fame message is pretty good, all things considered. The edited version takes all the profani... Continue reading

What's the story?

POWER is the first new single from hip-hop mogul Kanye West since his 2008 album 808s and Heartbreak. Rumored to be the initial track off his forthcoming fifth record, "Power" finds West launching a hard-hitting attack against all of his critics. The artist pulls no punches in this song: he uses tons of profanity and makes several disturbing allusions to violent, emotionally-complex situations. Overall, the single is way too mature for young kids -- and most teens, for that matter.

Is it any good?

If Kanye West truly is the king of anything, it's the killer hook -- which this song has. Like so many West songs that came before it, "Power" is set against an infectious musical backdrop, this one full of heavy drums and a chorus that repeats the word "hey" in an anthem-like line shout. And because West avoids singing in favor of rapping, fans can spend the tune enjoying his talent for rhyming rather than his mediocre vocals.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether an artist like Kanye West needs to make such extreme statements about his critics in order to appear superior. Does a person need to brag a lot and threaten violence to gain the respect of his or her peers? Why or why not?

  • What are five things that someone can do -- besides bragging and threatening -- to be respected by his or her friends?

Music details

  • Artist: Kanye West
  • Release date: July 1, 2010
  • Label: Roc-A-Fella
  • Genre: Hip-hop
  • Parental advisory: Yes
  • Edited version available: Yes
  • Last updated: June 20, 2019

For kids who love hip-hop

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