Fans of Kanye West didn’t exactly wait a short time for his new album “DONDA”, which was supposed to be released much earlier. Instead, Kanye West went back to doing Kanye West stuff and one absurdity outdid the next. Now it’s out. What’s happened so far. ⤵
On Thursday, July 22, Kanye West held a big listening event at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta for which fans could buy tickets. The idea was probably to play the album there for the first time before it then officially comes out on Friday night.
However, the reality was that Kanye played largely unfinished songs and the album did not appear. A few days earlier, there were several exclusive listening sessions for invited guests. According to blogger Andrew Barber, the version he heard at one such event was already said to be very different from what Kanye West played in the stadium. So the album was definitely still in the making. This is also shown by a feature part of Jay-Z, which Kanye played in the stadium. According to Jay-Z’s sound engineer Young Guru, this was recorded just a few hours before.
So the finished album still wasn’t there, but the rumor was that Kanye would be staying at the stadium in Atlanta to finish “DONDA”. That’s completely crazy even by Kanye standards. Nevertheless: The rumor had been confirmed.
Kanye used this opportunity to make a legendary appearance. At a soccer game, he briefly came out of his living area and mingled – still in the same outfit from the show – among the audience in the fan curve.
After it was clear that Kanye stayed in the stadium, his fans started speculating what the rest of the team would be like. Quickly established the meme that Kanye West would keep Mike Dean trapped there until the album is finished. Mike Dean is an American producer who has worked for many years with Kanye, but also with Travis Scott, Selena Gomez or The Weeknd, among others. He is especially known for his outstanding mixing quality, which is probably what he does on “DONDA”.
The rumors were so persistent that Mike Dean even commented on them himself. He is not a prisoner and is currently at home.
In early August, there was a second listening session in Atlanta that was livestreamed. However, the livestream started several hours before and that was pretty weird. The action took place in Kanye’s room and ran without sound. He was masked most of the time and wore a bulletproof vest with the inscription “DONDA”. Sometimes Kanye was seen lifting weights or doing push-ups, sometimes a microphone was set up and he seemed to be recording something, sometimes guests dropped by. A recording also went viral in which Kanye gets up after a nap (this was also shown completely live) and walks around the room with morning wood. As I said, it was weird.
At some point the official event went off and Kanye presented (again) his tenth solo album “DONDA” in front of his fans in the stadium in Atlanta. Again on a Thursday, again the idea that the album will be released at 0 o’clock. At least the idea of the public, whether Kanye ever intended to do so, can probably be doubted. The music that Kanye played was again different from that of the first listening session. The main thing that attracted attention was the considerable list of feature guests that he revealed by playing their parts.
The show itself was also spectacular. For the grand finale, Kanye floated towards the sky, presumably on his way to see his mother Donda West, who died in 2007.
But there was no trace of the album “DONDA” at 0 o’clock. To fill a stadium twice for a listening event of an album that doesn’t even exist yet – only Kanye West can do that.
Kanye has been using the abbreviation Ye instead of his full name for quite some time and often, but now he has reportedly even applied for a name change so that Ye becomes his official name. He believes that Ye is the most commonly used word in the Bible. He says it means “You,” he is you, he is us. He wants to move away from Kanye, who is just one person, to Ye, which symbolizes many things. From the album “DONDA” until then, by the way, still nothing to hear…
On August 26 he presented his new album “DONDA” for the third time in a stadium in Chicago. For this he had again thought of something special: For the stage set he had the house rebuilt in which he grew up with his mother Donda West.
Just like the previous shows, there was a new version of “DONDA” to be heard. Some of his own parts were rearranged, but the changes among the feature guests were especially noticeable. For example, Jay-Z was again removed from the song “Jail” and replaced by DaBaby, who was recently criticized for homophobic statements.
But DaBaby was not the only controversial guest. Kanye West had also invited Marilyn Manson, who was on stage with him at times. Manson is currently facing multiple allegations of sexual abuse, including from “Game of Thrones” actress Esme Bianco.
But the most curious new feature guest on “DONDA” is called Globglogabgalab. No, I didn’t just bang on the keyboard, Globglogabgalab really exists. It’s a character from the 2013 children’s movie “Stravinsky and the Mysterious House.” In the movie, there is a scene where the Globglogabgalab sings a – let’s call it a “song”. With it, he made it onto the new Kanye West album. He was heard at the end of the song “Remote Control.” The memes, of course, are pre-programmed.
An eye-catcher in the show was a scene in which Kanye West set himself on fire. About the deeper meaning behind it there are also already first interpretations. Because actually it was only the setup of a much more important scene.
For the grand finale of the show, a veiled woman in a wedding dress came on stage, Kanye spoke briefly with her and then the two left the show together and were still seen together afterwards. Already at the previous shows for “DONDA” it was noticed that Kanye wore his wedding ring.
The assumption is that it was Kim Kardashian and a symbolic re-marriage of her and Kanye. In recent months, the two were separated, they are even said to have already filed their divorce papers. Seems like there was a happy ending after all.
On Sunday, August 29, the time had come: Kanye West released his album “DONDA” with quite a delay. Announced since last year, he now released 27 new tracks – the last four, by the way, are alternative versions of other album songs that he presented at the third show in Chicago. But he wouldn’t be Kanye West if there wasn’t one more wise thing to follow. On Instagram he posted: “Universal put out my album without my consent and they blocked Jail 2” – that’s the joint song with DaBaby and Marilyn Manson. In the meantime, however, that too is online.
This post was preceded by screenshots of a chat between Kanye’s manager and Kanye, which he has since deleted. There, it was said that DaBaby’s management would be cross and not release “Jail 2” for publication. But Kanye insisted that DaBaby should be on the album and said that otherwise the album should not be released.
Whether “DONDA” was released completely against Kanye’s will, or his statement was only about the missing song with DaBaby, is not exactly clear. In the meantime, however, everything is online, Kanye should be happy with it and fans finally have the album they had to wait so long for after turbulent weeks full of Kanye madness.