After many a speculation and many a postponement, Kanye West has returned in notable fashion with DONDA.
His tenth studio album after 2019’s JESUS IS KING, DONDA comes with controversy, speculation and ample amounts of doubt whether or not it would actually be released at all.
But it dropped this Friday just gone. Whether or not Kanye agreed to the release or not – as it was later confirmed he had no hand in it after the label Universal themselves released the 27-part exploration – certainly puts a big question mark on Kanye’s mindset, creativity and mental state as he ventures into this album.
With no pre-released singles amping up the album itself, the arrival of the esteemed album was hyped up as it is, especially as Kanye reportedly lived inside Atlanta Stadium to finish off DONDA with many avid, life-long producers abandoning West mid-production as he had become simply unbearable to be around.
The uncontrollable mess of affairs that led up to this album, is certainly prevalent when first listening to this one. Truth to be told, it’s an album that is okay. With a fairly similar trope of skipping through songs at the end, DONDA have a few stand-out songs that brings out back the Yeezus Kanye of our time. A particularly dark and ambient feel throughout, DONDA features the eutrophic choral anthems that we heard a lot through JESUS IS KING in 2019.
Marked as a gospel album or not, there are some songs that spark a flair of the brilliant from West and certainly a worthy tribute to his late mother, which the album is named after.
Jail, Hurricane and Jonah become first favourites for me, as Kanye looks to God more and more as his personal life seemingly crumbles around him. But, Kanye isn’t just a music artist. He is a critically lauded artist who creates movements. Movements in every aspect of music, culture and entertainment. Whether or not it discourages you from listening to Kayne again, it’s certainly worth the listen. Maybe even starting to understand Kanye again after his most recent divorce with Kim. Since he professed his love to her in Yeezus, it has clearly shook him up good.
This elusive work – although features many more trap beats than Kayne would normally allow past first – is a marvellous gorge into Kayne’s creativity-process. Get to know every chapter so far. All 27 of them.
DONDA RELEASED BY UNIVERSAL WITHOUT MY SAY, ARTIST CLAIMS.