Ye Premieres Donda 2 in Miami

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The celebrity appearances ran deep–many feature in some way on Donda 2. Both Marilyn Manson and DaBaby were back (they surfaced at the rapper’s most recent Chicago show, to some backlash). Migos, The Game, Pusha T, Jack Harlow, Alicia Keys, Fivio Foreign, and Playboi Carti all took to the stage, and all reportedly also wore Balenciaga. Spectators included Rick Ross, Diddy, French Montana, and Elon Musk.

And West’s proven merchandise game was as strong as ever: Pieces from Yeezy Gap Engineered by Balenciaga were on sale in the stands, some featuring prints of a flying dove. West is clearly a marketing mastermind, as evinced by everything from the hundreds in line to purchase merch to his making Donda 2 available exclusively on the Stem Player, his proprietary music device (shortly before the Miami show, he announced this news, and sold $2.2 million worth of the gadgets in a manner of days). The stagecraft was jaw-dropping, and the music sounded good, if warped with too much bass.

Yet for the strength of his vision, Ye is also welcomes controversy. A track on Donda 2 called “Eazy” features the lyric: “God saved me from that crash, just so I can beat Pete Davidson’s ass.” West has repeatedly antagonized Davidson, who is dating the rapper’s ex Kim Kardashian.

West seems to be following an old Gvasalia adage from the designer’s Vetements days: “May the bridges I burn light the way” was a famous slogan that appeared on that label’s hoodies and tees. West may be torching it all, only to rise again from the cinder. He’s not going anywhere.

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