Last Christmas, Kanye West gifted fans with his gospel-inspired Jesus Is Born and on Friday evening, the rapper-producer-fashionista turned the holiday into a tradition by releasing Emmanuel, a five-song EP “inspired by ancient and Latin music.”
While his past two musical offerings, Jesus Is King and Jesus Is Born, were heavily Gospel-influenced, the new 12-minute EP, executive produced and composed by West himself, include a new take on the Christian prayer “Requiem Aeternam” (“Eternal Rest”) and the choral work “O Magnum Mysterium”. The Sunday Service Choir performs on the entire classical project which features Gregorian chants over beat-based production. The Grammy-winning artist ends the EP with his interpretation of the ubiquitous Christian hymn “Gloria.”
The surprise release of Emmanuel, (translated means “God is with us,”) arrives without any of drama that accompanied Jesus Is King. West had worked on his first gospel project until the last minute, tweeting that he was still “fixing mixes” on three songs on the night of its supposed release. This time around, there was no mention of the project prior to its release.
Listen to Emmanuel, Kanye West’s latest collection.
Photo: Kenny Sun