Kanye West made a surprise appearance at Drake’s concert in Berlin, Germany Thursday night, where the rapper performed the Yeezus track “Black Skinhead.” An elevator lifted the rapper from the front of Drake’s stage as the song’s battering-ram beat kicked in. Performing amid a wash of red light, West rapped to the audience as Drake looked on, bouncing, waving his arms and mouthing along with the lyrics.
When he was done, West looked out at the audience as Drake addressed them. “I want you to understand, this is my dear friend,” he said. “This is the reason why I’m standing in front of you today. This is the mentor. This is the god. This is the genius of all geniuses. This is the man that is Kanye motherfucking West.” Then the rappers just soaked in the applause, and Drake bowed before West with his arms outstretched in a “We’re not worthy” way à la Wayne’s World. West hugged his friend and walked away.
Part of the reason why the two rappers have such mutual admiration, according to Drake, is because it’s not about competition. “I’m more worried about consistency, about bodies of work,” he told an NYU crowd last year. “I’m talking about hit records . . . that’s Kanye West. He’s always going to be the guy who’s trying to outthink and out-do. That’s my guy that I aspire to surpass.”
But things weren’t always so peachy keen. Drake contributed a verse to the DJ Khaled track “I’m on One” with a line challenging West and Jay Z, saying “the throne is there for the taking – watch me take it.” But they came to an understanding when West asked Drake to trade favors; Drake appeared at the birthday party of a friend of West’s, and West stopped by OVO.
Nevertheless, Drake told Rolling Stone this year that he had some criticisms of Yeezus. “There were some real questionable bars on there,” he said. “Like that ‘Swaghili’ line [on “I’m in It”]? Come on, man. Even Fabolous wouldn’t say some shit like that.” But he also said, “Kanye’s the reason I’m here. I love everything about that guy.”
It’s not the first time these two rappers have crashed each other’s parties. Last December, Drake made his way onto West’s stage to perform “Forever” when the Yeezus tour stopped through Toronto. And earlier in 2013, West made an appearance at Drake’s OVO Festival in Toronto.