When we heard that Kanye West and Sir Paul McCartney jumped on a track together, “Only One” was the last thing we imaged. But given the sentimental value behind the record, Kanye stans ate it right up—no questions asked and no critique given. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed experiencing a different side of Ye’, but come on.
Similarly, when hearing that Rihanna jumped on a track with the legendary Beatles guitarist and the almighty YEEZUS, I expected more. Not to say the record was horrible, but there was certainly room for improvement. The country-popish sound was a curveball, and while the trio made it work, a Rihanna-McCartney duo could have made it better.
We collectively agreed that RiRi’s vocals sounded nothing short of amazing. The raspy tone and passion behind “FourFiveSeconds” complimented her singing. Then again, maybe that was her—her raspy tone and her passion. Either way, it worked phenomenally. Had her verses been extended throughout the song, it’s easily a record that would remain charting for a lot longer.
Kanye’s singing abilities, on the other hand, are close to nonexistent. But as most of us already know, Ye doesn’t exactly care and to prove just that, he’ll sing anyway. I completely enjoyed the passion behind this record when it came from Rihanna, but from Kanye it’s just a bit much. His excitement overpowers the song’s vibe and becomes a distraction all throughout.
The background “noise” that begins to prevail at the start of Ye’s verse is something else we could have also done without. While we remained uncertain as to what exactly it was—whether Rihanna singing or Paul maybe—we concluded it should have never been there to begin with. Personally, I’m convinced a pair of dying cats surrounded the studio during the recording of this song because that’s exactly what the “noise” sounds like, but I digress.
The large names behind this song are what give it the initial “wow” factor. Aside from that, it’s just an ordinary ‘good’ song. Overrated? Perhaps. Under-appreciated? Not at all. “FourFiveSeconds” has peaked in charts all over the world, as well as genres so the lifespan of the record might be inevitably longer than we’d like. To say it’s not a good song would be hating. To say it’s a great song would just be ass-kissing. We’re calling it how we see it and giving the record the credit it deserves; for the record.