The presentation of Kanye West’s new album “Donda 2” in Miami was also about the music, but by no means only.
Shortly before eleven o’clock at night it finally started. Before that, the fans on site and in the live stream had been hypnotized by abstract circular visuals and relevant sounds for almost three hours.
The joke circulated on the internet that it was already the album and that the whole thing was an actionist synthesis of the arts in the sense of Des Kanye’s new heartbeat. And the train of thought isn’t entirely wrong: in the past few years, ye has been consistently making step-by-step moves away from being a musician to becoming a universal artist specializing in spectacle.
A few years ago, fashion was only the first step, the last one being a well-designed experience performance in baseball diamonds. This was ankle-deep under water, on which ye could then metaphorically walk – look here, Yeezus! In the center was a replica of his childhood home in Chicago, which starred in last week’s first episode of the docu-series about Kanye’s life from fame.
Donda 2 is also dedicated to his mother, with whom he walked nostalgically through the rooms there, and musically it follows on directly from the predecessor: Somewhat antiseptic, but very big-sounding songs that, according to the specifications, should be equally suitable for baptisms, weddings and funerals . The guest appearances by Future, Travis Scott or the Migos are what stick with the first listens. And the mantras that Kanye said to us and to himself, sometimes pleadingly, sometimes defiantly. Elsewhere, he raps about his late friend, Louis Vuitton designer Virgil Abloh, or delivers more toxic digs at his ex-wife Kim.
The Donda 2 album is currently neither available to listen to digitally nor to buy physically – with one exception. With the Stem Player, Kanye’s circular music gadget for $200, you can even control the songs divided into four tracks and add effects. This gimmick is certainly fun for a short time, but a palm-sized MP3 player to take with you looks anachronistic in 2022. Refusing the exploitative market logic of the big streaming services is absolutely commendable and makes sense – especially for someone in Kanye’s position! However, as you have seen with previous exclusive releases for individual platforms, this could only lead to more illegal copies in the end. So we’ll see who wins this game. But the fans aren’t.
In any case, the experience didn’t go as perfectly as Kanye had hoped. After the listening session there were a few more live songs, where the attention-loving artist invited controversial guests like Marilyn Manson or DaBaby again. The sound engineering alone played several tricks on them, until ye threw the microphone and stomped away frustrated.
Donda 2 is the upcoming eleventh studio album by American rapper Kanye West.
West began recording the album in early September 2021. The album is planned to be released by GOOD Music exclusively through West’s Stem Player audio device. Donda 2 was originally scheduled to release on February 22, 2022.
On February 7, 2022, a private listening party was held for Donda 2 at Nobu Malibu, where Travis Scott, fellow rappers Offset, French Montana, Yung Lean and Drake as well as model Kendall Jenner were in attendance.