Kanye West
Credit: Kanye West: Jim Cooper/AP

Is Kanye West the savior of rap? He suggests as much to British music mag NME and to Time, which probably shocked a lot of subscribers by putting the rapper-producer on its cover this week. (To help explain this strange new music called rap to its subscribers, who are apparently all over 40, Time includes as a sidebar this helpful graphic, whose chart of hip-hop history plastered on a graffiti’d wall is most certainly not in the least bit patronizing.)

Kanye’s much-anticipated follow-up to The College Dropout, Late Registration, drops in stores on Tuesday, but you can hear it in its entirety now at NME’s website. (Aptly enough, registration is required to hear the stream.) Tell us if you think it lives up to the hype.