Who Flipped It Better? Kanye West vs. Jay Electronica
The Sample: Wee's 'Aeroplane (Reprise)'
We all know about 'Bound 2,' the orgasmic, intentionally cheesy closer to 'Yeezus.' Some of us may know where that “Uh huh, honey” comes from, while others may recognize that the real 'Bound 1' is by the Ponderosa Twins Plus One. But recently, Hudson Mohawke played a different version of the Kanye West song, apparently with co-production from Tyler, The Creator.
Flip 1: Kanye West's 'Bound 1'
It features the warped keys from Wee’s 'Aeroplane,' a soul classic that’s also been flipped by Ski Beatz and Just Blaze. It reminded us … wasn’t there another version of “Bound 2” that we’d heard where that sample is also more prominent?
Flip 2: Kanye West's 'Bound 2' (Video Version)
That’s one hell of a visual/audio combination for an intro. No I.D./Kanye/Tyler lift a short clip of the piano sequence in 'Aeroplane,' though the video version intro sounds more like a replayed interpolation than an actual extraction. In addition to those chords, Charlie Wilson also sings the main melody from the song, furthering the interpolation. Perhaps Ye should have had someone sing the part of Ricky Spicer, too.
Let’s now travel thousands of years, back to the times of Egyptian pyramids and ancient scriptures – to 2010. Jay Electronica was not yet a mummy, still popping out of his Illuminati hobbit hole to drop bread crumbs of knowledge on the masses. He was, nonetheless, winding down, so when he let go of what’s labeled in iTunes as 'Ruff Song For @FatBellyBella That Didn’t Make The Final Cut' (of 'Act II'), the masses scrambled for it. The song is, of course, an ode to Erykah Badu, and perhaps their breakup.
Flip 3: Jay Electronica's 'Fat Belly Bella'
Just Blaze claims that there are multiple versions of this beat floating around the internet, but here he layers the dancing piano over the same chords that Charlie Wilson sings, forming the entre instrumental that Jay goes over.
Kanye’s flip has more layers – not only do those chords introduce the video version, but the cyclical nature of the beat makes that sample resonate even when it’s not actually playing. It sways in tandem with the Ponderosa flip, and Wilson’s vocals make the song soar into ecstasy.
Just’s approach is more tame. The beautiful, more acoustic piano at the beginning is a lush touch, and the fact that he keeps the keys playing under the dominant chords gives the beat an undercurrent, but it just doesn’t match up to No I.D. and Kanye’s creativity here. Then again, if Just Blaze were to convince Jay Elect to release 'Act II', we’d gladly reverse the score in his favor.
Tyler, the Creator’s version, while it plays the Wee loop nicely throughout the verses, doesn’t pack the emotional punch that No I.D.’s beat does. It wanders, and thus doesn’t leave the same hole in your heart as the video version, so the gold medal goes to Kanye, with Just Blaze taking Silver and Tyler snagging Bronze.