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"Like Bowie, West is a mediatician as much as a musician.  So while the audio content of his seventh album intersects with the soundworlds of TriAngle or LuckyMe, it doesn’t make sense to approach The Life of Pablo in the way that 98% of the releases covered in this magazine get treated – as a primarily audio experience. Pablo resists being disentangled from the vortex of discourse - gossip, leaks, forensic analysis, public melt-downs - that imbricates its every texture and lyric.  Tempting as it is to hack exasperatedly away at the thicket of context and subtext – from the month-long cavalcade of “spaz in the news Kanye” (to quote a lyric from the album) to the way that virtually every sound and line seems hyperlinked – in order to get through to the Work itself, the truth is that the surrounding swirl is the Work, or at least an outer but un-detachable layer to it."

 

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"Through these metrics we are pushed and pulled in all sorts of directions by the imperative to be competitive. The rankings produced by those many competitions encourage us to follow the logics of metrics by making ‘informed’ or ‘strategic’ choices about what services and products we consume. Metrics shape how we judge and, more crucially, how we are judged. Systems of measurement are the mechanisms of neoliberal roll-out. In short, metrics are needed to enable differentiation, to facilitate rankings and to demarcate winners from losers. But to understand how markets govern, to understand how they discipline us and shape our behaviour, we need to understand how metrics make us feel."
 
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