Jay-Z and Kanye West released their highly anticipated album Watch The Throne on iTunes Monday morning at midnight EST. Following the release, Twitter users began critiquing each track, 140 characters or less at a time.
We thought that it would be interesting to look at what Twitter users, as an aggregate, think about the album. So, on Monday afternoon, using a Twitter sentiment analysis procedure developed by Jeffrey Breen, The Huffington Post analyzed the sentiment of 9,394 tweets about tracks on the album and scored each tweet.
In the graph below, we display the results from our analysis. The tracks were graded on a 100 point scale, 100 being the best score, 0 being the worst. The tracks "New Day" and "Welcome To The Jungle" are tied for the top score of 97. "Lift Off" and "Ni**as In Paris" are the lowest rated tracks with scores of 83 and 75 respectively. The tracks are ordered in their album order.
Play the audio below to hear an audio representation of the graph. The pitch changes based on the track scores.
Note, our sentiment analysis technique isn't 100% accurate and there is a lot of potential for error here. To perform our analysis, we used dictionaries of positive and negative words, then counted the number of positive or negative words in each tweet. Tweets received a grade +1 for each positive word and -1 for each negative word. For example, a tweet "Gotta Have It is an awesome, awesome track" would receive a score of +2 because the word 'awesome' is in our dictionary of positive words.
This technique doesn't take into account the intended meaning of the tweets, only keywords, and can misidentify tweets that are sarcastic or just those that contain positive (or negative) words while not having a positive (or negative) meaning.
The programming code in the statistical programming language R that was used for our analysis, which is again largely based on Jeffrey Breen's work, is available here. Read through Jeffrey's slideshow to understand our procedure.
If you're interested in reading more reviews of the album beyond this Twitter analysis, The Huffington Post's Kia Makarechi reviewed the album, praising Jay-Z and Kanye for their honesty and concluding that "neither rapper beats their all-time best performances here, but as messy as putting these two careers on the same disc could have been, it's hard to be anything but impressed."
We've also compiled other critic responses to the album.
Below, we've gathered some positive and negative tweets to illustrate some of the positive and negative reactions that we used to create the aggregate score.