Kanye's New Album Fails to Drop as Expected

'Donda 2' requires an extra $200 purchase of a Stem Player to hear it
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 18, 2022 1:46 PM CST
Updated Feb 22, 2022 1:50 PM CST
Kanye's New Album Comes With a Catch
Kanye West appears at the Vanity Fair Oscar party in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Feb. 9, 2020.   (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

(Newser) Update: Kanye West fans waited for his new Donda 2 album to drop at midnight Tuesday—the day of the album's planned release—and they're still waiting, reports the Daily Beast. This particular wait might be more annoying than most because West, who now refers to himself as Ye, required fans to buy a $200 Stem Player from his own platform in order to play it. He even boasted about sales, writing that "to earn the $2.2 million we made on the first day on the stem player the album would have had to stream 500 million times," he wrote on Instagram. No word on why the drop failed to happen at midnight as is typical, or whether it will happen at some point Tuesday, but the Twitter razzing is on. Our original story from Feb. 18 follows:

If you've been waiting for Kanye West's Donda 2 to drop, you're going to have to drop an extra couple of C-notes, in addition to the price of the album, to hear it, reports People. In a late-night Instagram post on Thursday, Ye announced that the album would only be made accessible on his own platform, the Stem Player, a $200 device that can "customize any song" and will come shipped with Donda 2 already included, per the Stem Player website. The album will not be available on Apple, Spotify, YouTube, or Amazon, he said.

"Today artists get just 12% of the money the industry makes," West wrote. "It's time to free music from this oppressive system. It's time to take control and build our own." In a separate post, West noted that there are currently 67,000 Stem Players available for purchase on which users "can play 4 different elements of the track: vocals, drums, bass and music. It also has a MP3 player available." He added that they're churning out 3,000 more of the devices daily. Don't feel like ponying up $200? At least you can catch a glimpse of the Donda 2 track list, which Ye apparently made public in a third post. (Read more Kanye West stories.)

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