Album Review: Ye – Donda

Category:  Music
Wednesday, November 3rd, 2021 at 12:40 PM
Album Review: Ye  –  Donda by Azzer Carpenter
Kanye West on stage at a "Donda" listening party in Atlanta. Photo: Universal Music Group.

“Donda,” released on Aug. 29, is Kayne West’s 10th studio album Universal Studios has allegedly released without the rapper’s approval. 

Fans were eager to hear West’s new album, given he hasn’t released any music in two years. The heavily anticipated album also came with lots of controversies. Initially, fans were disappointed to see certain artists featured on the album due to their negative image. DaBaby, for example, is featured on the second track, “Jail.” DaBaby was recently under fire on social media after he publicly made homophobic comments.  

After multiple pushed back release dates and three listening parties, the final product turned out to be a success. The album is difficult to classify, falling under rap, progressive hip-hop and alternative Gospel – proving to be one of the more unique pieces West has created. “Donda” also serves as one of his longer albums, with a total of 26 tracks. Previous albums “Ye” and “KIDS SEE GHOSTS,” only had seven. 

This album is a tribute to his mother, Donda West, who passed in 2007. The album shares the name of the 15th track, also titled “Donda.” The album opener, “Donda Chant” features a beat that represents her last heartbeats. This is one of the more abstract songs on the album. I enjoy it because it is a relatable song. My mother passed away back in 2009, so I understand the weight a heartbeat has in its final moments.  

Another popular song from the album is the second track, titled “Jail.” The name of this track represents the mental barriers West battled with after the death of his mother. Set apart by its beat and lyricism, “Jail” has been streamed over 993,000 times, according to Genius. Jay-Z makes an appearance as a featured artist on this song, echoing the duo’s original collaborative album, “The Throne,” which was released in 2011.  

Two other popular tracks are “Hurricane” and “Off the Grid.” They contain the original sound and flow provided by West, with incorporated sounds from other mainstream rappers, such aPlayboi Carti and The Weeknd 

“Donda” has been received by fans with open arms, proving once again that originality is noticeable. Even though this isn’t my preferred genre of music, I still enjoyed most of the songs, and I would recommend listening with an open ear and mind. 

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