Donda – Kanye West

Kanye’s over hyped up album officially released


Donda – Kanye West

Jennifer Pereyra, Reporter

Esteemed artist, director, producer, and writer Kanye West has released his tenth studio album on Aug. 29. This album has been highly anticipated since its tease in 2020 by West on twitter, claiming, “DONDA coming this Friday.” To many fans’ dismay, the album had not been released as promised. This led to many fans distrusting Kanye since this was not his first time doing this. It would make sense that when it was announced in late 2021 that Donda would drop again, some were skeptical.

The name of the album draws inspiration from West’s mother, Donda West. It serves as a homage to his mother, who died soon after the release of his third studio album, “Graduation” on Nov. 10,  2007. Donda had passed from a botched plastic surgery, where she would be undergoing many procedures in one session. Kanye had been close to his mother his whole life, even having written a song for her on his record “Late Registration” called “Hey Mama.” So it was no surprise that West had taken the death hard, even going as far to claim it was his fault for the lifestyle he had provided for her. The album “Donda” serves as Ye’s last goodbyes and promises to his mother, which may have been why it was delayed time and time again… so he could ensure that she would be proud.

This record is a mix of many styles that Kanye has explored in the past. It has some of the experimental sounds explored on his 2013 project Yeezus” on tracks like “God Breathed” and “Praise God”, some of the poppier sounds that are reminiscent of “The Life of Pablo” on songs like “New Again” and “Believe What I Say.” 

On top of that, Kanye reinforces the gospel influences and messages seen on his 2019 album “Jesus is King”, including triumphant choirs like in the song “24”, and bigger than life organs on songs like “Pure Souls” and “No Child Left Behind.” Kanye also goes into making songs unlike anything we’ve ever heard from him in songs like “Off The Grid” and “Moon.”

I believe that this album is more Kanye flexing his composer muscles, with a total of 33 collaborators on this project, all stretching from different genres and fields. Some of the collaborators include Marilyn Manson, Jay-Z, Ariana Grande, Westside Gunn, Shenseea, and many more. 

This wide cast of musicians on the project makes you feel like you are being sucked into West’s world and seeing all of his influences and collaborators. Although it provides the album with a wide palate, it can at times feel like this is not Kanye’s project, with at some points having the feature take up a significant majority of the song and leaving Kanye as almost an afterthought, or at times, the worst part of the song.

Some of the highlights from this project include “Off The Grid”, “Hurricane”, “Junya”, “24”, “Moon”, “Pure Souls” and “No Child Left Behind.”

Overall, I’d rate this album an 8.7/10.