The Game’s Jesus Piece Download pounds out a variety of styles thanks to the feature-packed album, including the likes of Kanye West, 2 Chainz, Lil Wayne, Chris Brown and Rick Ross. But the stellar flows do not drown out the considerable vocal talents of the West Coast rapper, as he goes on about his newfound spirituality with a gangster treatment. The Jesus Piece Download album cover that reflects this fledgling faith has ruffled a few feathers, but I find it a compelling piece of quasi-religious iconography on its own.
A black Jesus Christ is depicted in front of a stained glass window that reminds you of Baz Luhrmann’s tropical-esque take on Romeo and Juliet. But something else is wrong with the picture on Jesus Piece Download — besides the semi-droste Christ wearing gold bling in His own image and the screen dotted with gang symbols and stray cannabis leaves, that is. A “sacred heart” red bandana hangs over the lower half of the face, a nod to The Game’s aggressive roots.
Perhaps scared of losing potential revenue from the conservatives, the label has released a less provocative alternative cover with Jesus Piece Download that is showing a black and white picture of the Game’s late older brother, who was shot dead at age 21. In response to those calling the art and album blasphemous, The Game just shrugs it off. No apologies and no f***s will be given.
“Number one, it’s my artwork,” said the rapper. “If you don’t like it just simply close your eyes and open them in a different direction…If you don’t like the music or feel it’s blasphemous then just don’t buy the album and get free Jesus Piece Download.”
He also adds that 90 percent of the cover art haters “don’t attend church more than I do.” Which is almost every week, apparently, when he’s home. Kudos to fiancée Tiffany Cambridge (a devout Christian) for partly influencing his spirituality and his work on Jesus Piece Download. The not-so-subtle message: Get off his back and leave him to practice whatever version of religion he chooses to practice.