Don Toliver Releases His Best Project Yet With ‘Life of a DON’

by Noah Soria on October 18, 2021

Since having the world’s ear from being featured on the track “CAN’T SAY” on Travis Scott’s Grammy-nominated album ‘ASTROWORLD’, Don Toliver has been able to continue his elevation in these last three years in the mainstream light. Last year, the Houston native released his debut project under Cactus Jack Records titled, Heaven or Hell, which got positive reviews from the masses. After a solid run of features here in 2021, Don Toliver has remained accessible without oversaturating the market. 

While traveling the United States on his Life of a DON tour with BIA, Don Toliver has released his brand-new album, ‘Life of a DON’. The 16-track project includes the prior released singles “What You Need” as well as “Drugs N Hella Melodies” which features Don’s girlfriend & pop star Kali Uchis. Both were released with accompanying cinematic visuals, to say the least. These two tracks gave fans what to look forward to once the full body of work was released. 

Don Toliver begins the album with “XSCAPE”, a mellow sounding track that eases the listener into the rest of the album and sets the tone for what’s to come. The Cardo-produced “Flocky Flocky” turns up the pace, with help from Cactus Jack himself, Travis Scott. The psychedelic sounding “Swangin’ on Westheimer” is simply one of them ones. A song perfect for a nighttime drive. On “2AM” Don tests out his range as a vocalist, a sound that’s very similar to his chorus on Kanye West’s “Moon” that was on ‘Donda’. “Get Throwed” shows off the artist’s versatility as he finds pockets as an MC, while still being melodic. “OUTERSPACE” featuring Baby Keem is a two-part track that takes the artists to two separate planets. Baby Keem yet again talks about two hoes. Fellow Houston native HVN & fellow Cactus Jack signed SoFaygo shine on “Smoke”. The final track “Bogus” seems like Don Toliver is taking the victory lap. It’s the right punctuation mark on this body of work. 

Another thing that stood out on this album was production. Don teamed up with legendary instrumentalists: Cardo, Hit-Boy, Mustard, Metro Boomin, Mike Dean, and DJ Dahi, among many others. All the producers brought their respective styles to Don’s world, while still being able to be themselves as producers. It appears that Don was able to have a complete vision, with an end goal, and everyone was able to play their part in accomplishing that sonically. A lot of these instrumentals are unique, and this sound will most likely never be repeated by these producers ever again. 

‘Life of a Don’ is Don Toliver’s most cohesive body of work yet. There’s been a progression over the last 18 months. This is an album that fits almost every mood or scene. The one thing that people may say that’s negative towards this project is that the lyrics lack real substance. That may be right, however, that’s not the type of artist Don Toliver is. He brings a feeling that not many artists can achieve. He’s no longer in Travis Scott’s shadow, he has become a force to be reckoned with in his own right. The replay value on this project is one of the best this year, and in a time where projects are only for the now, ‘Life of a Don’ is a body of work that will stay in rotation for months to come. 


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