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Kanye stirs controversy with risque album cover, says it’s banned

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Sometimes it’s hard to decipher what Kanye West is better at: Making music, or making controversy.

This time, it’s the proposed album cover for Kanye’s anticipated album, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” that lies at the epicenter of the latest rumblings. Kanye wrote via Twitter that the cover is banned in the U.S.

The cover art depicts a naked, armless woman with wings, a polka-dotted tail, and an evil, clown-like grimace strewn across its face. The woman is straddling a naked Kanye, who also sports a similar grimace while clutching a green bottle of an indecipherable beverage. The piece was rendered by artist George Condo.

“I told [Condo] I wanted a phoenix, and that’s what he came up with. And what I love about it is, both me and George express ourselves with our truest vision, not based on what society or culture feels is right, but what’s truly in our heart,” Kanye told MTV News. “I thought the colors were just amazing, and the imagery was amazing. I thought it was a cool, awesome cover.”

While it’s not clear who supposedly banned the cover, Kanye’s record label reportedly urged the megastar not to use the art, but reiterated the label would support whatever decision he made.

Some suspected Wal-Mart may have disallowed the cover because Kanye wrote this in a rant on Twitter: “In all honesty … I really don’t be thinking about Wal-Mart when I make my music or album covers…”

But Wal-Mart released a statement denying they rejected the art, saying they were never shown the cover in the first place.

This may not be the only controversial cover on Kanye’s new album, set to release Nov. 22. The rap musician said the album will have five covers. “And you get all five of them when you buy the album,” Kanye told MTV News.

The artist has yet to reveal what the other four look like.

Photo by David Shankbone.

Photo by Kanye West and George Condo via Twitpic.

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