While it has been a little over two weeks since Doja Cat unleashed her third studio album, Planet Her, the project proves itself to be stellar. You don’t need a telescope to see that the future is Doja Cat. Following 2019‘s Hot Pink and 2018’s Amala, the 25-year-old took no time to launch into her new era… the universe that is Planet Her.
In the past, much of Doja’s music seemed to be lackadaisical and carefree. Unconventional and unbothered, the young, self-taught songwriter garnered much attention since her viral hit, Mooo, back in 2018. Since then, Doja Cat’s artistry has evolved in such a way no one may have expected. On her third (and best) studio album, Planet Her, Doja Cat transcends to even higher unreached levels. Released on Friday (Jun. 25), Planet Her holds 14 tracks. The album features a decorated list of artists such as Ariana Grande, Young Thug, SZA, J.I.D., & The Weeknd.
The beauty behind Doja Cat is… you truly never know what you’re going to get with her. For example, on the album’s first two opening tracks (“Woman” & “Naked), she blends both mainstream pop sounds with Afrobeats in such a way that has never been done. The album’s opener, “Woman” is an Afrobeat anthem that celebrates women. Much like the album’s title, “Woman” contains the theme of divine femininity. What starts as her addressing a male lover on the ways that women are magnificent and how to care for them, turns into an all-out praising of women in general. She praises the way women move, their beauty, sexuality, and more. “Naked” keeps this same appeal utilizing more serene Afrobeat production. Here, Doja discusses intimacy and sexuality through the physical interaction between both she and her lover. She craves him and she has no problem showing it.
Diversity immediately begins on the next couple of tracks. Again, Doja Cat evolves into yet another new being. Cuts such as the Young Thug-assisted “Payday” and “Get Into It (Yuh)” not only mesh the genres of Hip-Hop, Trap, and Pop together flawlessly, but they remind us all that Doja Cat’s pen game is one of the most skilled in the game. On the hyper-pop banger, “Payday,” Doja lifts her pitch and cadence to deliver this squeaky, animated appeal. She keeps up with Thug and even surpasses him in strange tones and bars. “Get Into It (Yuh)” finds Doja effortlessly talking her sh*t over extensive, restless bars. By the end of the celebratory, pop-trap record, she pays homage to Nicki Minaj’s iconic 2010 hit, “Massive Attack,” before unleashing a barrage of bars of her own.
Thank you, Nicki, I love you
Got that big rocket launcher!Doja Cat in “Get Into It (Yuh)”
As Planet Her continues, listeners are greeted by even more ground-shaking cuts from the album. Beginning with the sensational bedroom banger, “Need To Know,” Doja again transforms. Much like a snake, she sheds her skin and becomes a new being. “Need To Know” furthers the mission of divine femininity as Doja goes beserk over spacey production. Owning her sexuality, Doja takes control of the taboo topic. She even declares, “I don’t really got no type, I just wanna f*ck all night.” Melodic, confident, and demanding, she creates this mesmerizing moment on the album.
One of the absolute best moments on Planet Her comes with the larger-than-life pop ballad, “I Don’t Do Drugs,” with Ariana Grande. Doja Cat thrives on sweet, melodious records that possess bubbly choruses and catchy hooks. Here, in their third collaboration, both Ariana and Doja compare their lovers to… drugs. The feelings they bring them are synonymous with the very rush that a mind-altering drug gives. Ironically, while they are trying to avoid this rush, they very much desire the rush in the same breath. Doja not only holds her own with Ariana, but she reminds listeners that she can roam freely in the world of pop with or without any assistance. Ariana is the icing on the already tasty cake that makes this gem so irresistible.
The incredible enchanting pop hits continue to pour in with monumental cuts like the dreamy, “Love To Dream,” the sultry, Weeknd-assisted, “You Right,” and the slow-burning “Been Like This.” Each of these various R&B-infused pop hits simply shows the artistry and skill that is Doja Cat. Even when it feels as if she’s not trying, she delivers in such a way that simply cannot be imitated. These songs are intoxicatingly free and deeply sentimental – furthering this theme of femininity.
Much like a chameleon, Doja Cat is able to shift into different modes throughout the entirety of this album. She provides heartfelt tracks that sound like movie soundtracks. In the same breath, she breathes fire on tracks, spitting impressive speedy verses with pure ease. Planet Her’s second half adds fire to the flame not letting up.
On “Options,” both Doja and J.I.D. go bar-for-bar as they speak on being one of each other’s various options. The two are here for one reason. They both are aware of each other’s rosters but that does not phase them. The two live in the present moment of intimacy and lust. One of the album’s most anticipated moments comes on the R&B cut, “Ain’t Shit,” where Doja airs the entire male species out. It’s only right that the ladies get an album that lets them talk all their sh*t about men. In a way, the song is a release. It’s a part of nearly every woman’s life and Doja makes sure to highlight it.
Much like its beginning, Planet Her utilizes openness and brevity. Doja remains transparent through the album’s entirety. Whatever emotion she’s feeling, she makes sure it’s heard for all. On “Alone,” she owns her solitude. As she continues to grow as a human being and woman she reassures herself that is indeed ok to be alone. The album’s final song, the lead single, “Kiss Me More,” with SZA is the full embodiment of femininity.
An unbothered Doja Cat again says everything that’s on her mind. She desires physical interaction. She goes as far as to even yell “I feel like f*cking something.” Sexual and empowered, she proudly asserts herself. While she wants to be cradled and loved on, she has no problem taking the lead. SZA delivers an eclectic verse sharing how essentially dealing with this particular person nearly causes headaches more than love.
Say give me a buck, need that gushy stuff
Push the limit, no, you ain’t good enough
All your n*ggas say that you lost without me
All my b*tches feel like I dodged the county
F*ckin’ with you feel like jail, n*gga
I can’t even exhale, n*ggaSZA in “Kiss Me More”
In the end, the two desire the love without the hell when it comes to dealing with their partners – much like all women across the face of this planet.
Ultimately, Planet Her is kaleidoscopic. There are so many layers and appeals within this body of work. It is a full expression of femininity and being a woman today. Everything you want, Doja provides. Ironically, she has no desire to try to please anyone. Having been “canceled,” mocked, and ridiculed in the past, she has no concern for anyone. As she shrugs off the haters and naysayers, she delivers such an alluring project that it pulls you in on the first listen. She plays by her own rules and that formula nails it for her every single time. Planet Her is Doja Cat at her finest yet. She steps outside of any box that any critic tries to place her in and rides freely in any and every lane she sets her eyes on. Every song delivers something different from the previous one.
And, if those 14 songs were not enough for you, the star followed up a day after Planet Her’s release with a Deluxe edition. The Deluxe adds 5 more songs with features from both Gunna and Eve. With her third album, Doja Cat takes her stardom to newer levels on Planet Her. Putting on for the weird girls, she flawlessly delivers a meaningful, timeless body of work that will age immensely well in the years to come. Her pen game is sharp, her songwriting is incredible, and her musical talent is undoubtedly evident. If you haven’t heard already, the future is Doja. Planet Her receives a 8.5/10.
Top 5 Songs from Planet Her:
- I Don’t Do Drugs
- Need To Know
- You Right
- Why Why