Tune Talk: “Love Sick (Deluxe)” Album Review

Don Toliver’s “Love Sick” (Deluxe) Album Cover

Layne Barnes, Staff Writer

Don Toliver, a rapper, singer, and songwriter, has been on an uphill ride to stardom since his breakout in 2018 where he released his first album, signed to Cactus Jack Records and was a surprise feature on Travis Scott’s album, “Astroworld.” 


Now with those things bringing the spotlight in Don Toliver’s direction, that spotlight wouldn’t stick with him if it weren’t for how diverse Don Toliver is from other artists in the hip-hop/rap genre. He puts a lot of focus into his voice, and how it commutes to the sounds. He does it to the point where first time listeners or occasional listeners would label him as a singer. Though he has the ability to sing, a lot of rap is implemented into his songs, which is what diversifies him from many others currently in the industry.


Now aside from Don Toliver’s placement in the industry and who he is, what about his newest album “Love Sick”? Well, out of the four albums Don Toliver has released, “Love Sick” is his most conceptually direct album yet, touching purely on the ruminations of love, and the ways he’s been involved with it.


Don Toliver takes us through his journey to courtship. Starting with the song “Let Her Go,” Don Toliver dives into an unrequited love scenario. Thus leading into the following track, “Leave The Club” where we find Don Toliver in the club on the dance floor, and wanting to make advancements with a woman. To the next track called “4 Me,” we find Don Toliver and Kali Uchis both speaking on the value they see in each other, and the undying love between them. Kali Uchis singing, “If I could be your girl,” and Don Toliver saying, “You’re the only girl for me” and “You’re the only girl I need,” dives into not just the conceptual romance between the two in the song, but their actual romance between each other.


Within a few days after the release of “Love Sick,” Don Toliver released a deluxe for “Love Sick” and it included four more songs, with features from Travis Scott and Teezo Touchdown. The deluxe version started off with the song “No Pole,” which is an outsider of a song compared to the others. The beat is vastly different from all of the other songs on the album, and the way Don Toliver flows throughout that song really brings its value up. Then the song “Embarrassed” takes a much more mellow approach, smooth and relaxing. With greatly woven in strings and background sounds looping throughout the song, while Travis Scott and Don Toliver deliver on the song, it makes for one of best songs on the album. Then the track “Luckily I’m Having,” which features Teezo Touchdown, is also a very mellow sounding song, but gives much more of an uplifting vibe to it than others on the album. 


The deluxe version of this album was done really well. Though it may have been a rushed release, the songs included were worth the addition. Overall the deluxe version really brought more life to the album. Not to say that the album had no life before it, but the value the deluxe brought in really amped it up. 


With this being Don Toliver’s most direct conceptual album to date, it also feels like Don Toliver’s most well rounded album. The songs as a whole blend well together and there aren’t really any songs that bring the album down. Though compared to Don Toliver’s other albums there aren’t really any highs for this album. It’s an overall good album but the highs of past Don Toliver albums really make you think what could be a high for “Love Sick.” 


Overall, “Love Sick” is one of the better albums we’ve gotten in this first quarter of the year. It’s a great listen, and is definitely worth checking out. Its vibe is purely on love, but the sounds the songs have is what makes this album listenable at really any time or setting. But it leaves room for wants and needs for whatever Don Toliver has up next for fans.