Ain’t no other man could stir up some drama for Christina Aguilera quite like Kanye West.
While the 37-year-old pop diva is enjoying the fruits of her sexy pop comeback, she's got one plot twist to deal with: Yeezy's involvement.
Liberation, Aguilera’s first album in six years, features tracks like the lead single “Accelerate,” as well as “Maria"—which she's described as a favorite. Both songs were produced by—you guessed it—West. A few years ago, this wouldn’t have been an issue, however, considering West’s recent string of controversial tweets and his breakdown at TMZ (during which he referred to slavery as “a choice”) Aguilera felt the need to explain her decision to drop music with his name in the credits.
In a new interview with W, she goes there. “Kanye, you know, he says things. His mind works in mysterious ways,” she said. “I’ll just say that. I’ve always been a fan of his music…If anything, he gives with his gut.”
She moved on to describe what it’s like to create music with the rapper: “You can feel it in his beats. It’s genuine. It feels like his truth, even if it’s not going to go over well. But he really spoke to me. Even in that conversation we had, he would go on about other subjects and stuff like that. But then he would kind of remind me of myself. Like, oh, okay.”
Though Aguilera doesn’t explicitly defend his controversial points of view, she doesn’t necessarily condemn them either. “He just has a different way of thinking and he’ll trail off in his own thoughts. You get the sense, though, that there’s a good guy there. Sometimes we’re all just a little misunderstood.”
Separately, she’s been teasing her new single with Demi Lovato, “Fall in Line,” a song she describes as an empowering hymn for women, and which W suggests could easily be interpreted as a response to the #MeToo and Trump era. “Liberation is about me getting back to that little-girl me,” she said. “You hear ‘Fall in Line’ and maybe think it was inspired by this time and it’s not. It was created years ago. It’s something I’ve always felt very strongly.”
We're just glad—on multiple levels—she didn't consult Kanye "whoop-di-scoop-di-poop" West on the lyrics.