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How one uber-proactive Kanye fan listened to 'The Life of Pablo' before anyone else in Japan

TOYOMU Imagining the Life of Pablo after Kanye West
Album artwork from 'Imagining "The Life of Pablo"'

We've all been there. Toyomu, a Kyoto-based music producer and ardent Kanye West fan, was understandably flustered when he couldn't listen to Mr Yeezy's latest long-player along with the rest of the world – as you might have heard, The Life of Pablo was initially released exclusively for Jay-Z's streaming service Tidal, which is of course unavailable in Japan. Yet, when Kanye did an abrupt about-face and authorised a wider digital release earlier this month, Toyomu had already listened to the album – sort of.

Instead of resorting to piracy like most reasonable people, the ever-proactive Toyomu gleaned samples and lyrics from WhoSampled and Genius to produce an entire replica album – one he thought would sound just like the real thing. Channelling his frustration with region filters and the dearth of glamourous streaming providers in Japan into his tunes, Toyomu churned out Imagining 'The Life of Pablo', an appropriately experimental work replete with glitchy breakbeats and text-to-speech rapping. Listen to the DIY 'Kanye album' here.

 

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