A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
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)
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?
For kids who love hip-hop
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.