A year ago, after the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards, Doja Cat told us what to expect from a new album. Each new song would “have its own ‘personality’,” she said, and it wouldn’t be “perfectly consistent.” “We’ve got some dancehall stuff there, some afrobeat stuff, some funk, house. I’m trying to cover all bases,” she said. Now we know what she meant. Her latest album, Planet Her, comes out today (June 25).
Discovered by Kemosabe Records and RCA Records via SoundCloud at the age of 17, Doja released her first studio album, amala, in 2018, though it didn’t quite get up to speed until her viral meme “Mooo!” took off and helped the subsequent singles “Candy” and “Juicy” travel as well. She totally became a star with 2019’s Bright pink, especially when the lead single “Say So” was at the top Billboard Hot 100. On Planet Her, she keeps that promise.
This time she is collaborating with Young Thug, Ariana Grande, JID, The Weeknd and SZA. The album touches on various themes of love, lust, sex, regret, femininity, money and breakups – meaning it has a song for every mood. Below we explain which they are.
Listen to it if you feel: divine feminine
Key text: “Baby, adore my hips and waist / So feminine with grace”
Doja opens the album with an Afrobeats song that expresses her femininity, while also exploring the many difficulties and expectations that women are pressured to conform to. She also elaborates on how the patriarchy often tries to create competition, pit women against each other and “end up like us Regina on mean girls.” Much of the song is also a message for men to know how a woman can take care of them.
Listen to it if you feel: confident and sexy
Key text: “You can leave windows open / It doesn’t matter who sees me out of my clothes, baby”
This reggaeton-inspired song is about Doja wanting to play frisky with someone and don’t care if the world bumps into them. She sends a message that it’s not abnormal for people to be overtly sexual: “Earn it to be comfortable / It’s only natural.” Plus, she drops a line about bisexuality — “Yeah, I like bananas and peaches” — on this song that doubles as a how-to for feeling confident with your own body and sexuality.
“Payday” (ft. Young Thug)
Listen to it if you feel: excited about money
Key text: “I just can’t believe it / I got what I wanted all my life, now we’re going / Oh yeah, yeah, yeah / Getting paid every day, yeah”
On an extremely high register, Doja reassures us that she has all the money and fame in the world, and even potential beauties should know that well. In his own towering cadence, Young Thug drops by to also offer his take on this ode to luxury: “Hope you wanna fuck want my money long like limousine.”
“Come In (Yuh)”
Listen to it if you feel: Nicki Minaj vibes
Key text: “Thank you, Nicki, I love you”
The song seems to be a tribute to Nicki Minaj, Doja’s “Say So” collaborator, as she has a similar inflection and flow for two minutes. Doja even sincerely thanks Nicki at the end of the song, pointing out one of her early cuts in the process. One rap icon gives love and support to another. We’d love to see it.
Listen to it if you feel: lustful and sexually curious
Key text: “Baby show me how it is / I don’t really have no type / I just wanna fuck all night”
Another celebration of sexuality, “Need to Know,” Doja finds fantasizing about a light-hearted, spatial beat as she voices her own desires and curiosity. As such, she sounds excited to show “a bunch of new tricks” and “know what it’s like”. Save these for date night.
“I Don’t Do Drugs” (ft. Ariana Grande)
Listen to it if you feel: high in love
Key text: “I just want you, but I don’t do drugs”
Simply put, Doja likens passionate love to being high on drugs. She’s got her boyfriend Ari on the hook to give a beautiful falsetto, in a pseudo-sequel to the couple’s “Motive” from last year. While Doja chooses “You don’t really hit me back” and Ariana chooses “You play on the safe side / But you fuck me on this FaceTime”, the hunt for them creates more temptation and desire.
“Love to dream”
Listen to it if you feel: sadness, longing and regret
Key text: “It’s not you, baby, it’s just me / I don’t believe what I just lost”
doja confirmed in a reply tweet to a fan that this song is about “fantasizing and reminiscing about an ex.” According to the lyrics, the ex felt inadequate because of Doja’s tendency to overthink: “I know what you mean, you don’t fuck with randoms / I got everything, everything but real love / I got in my head, I bet you can get me out again.” As a result, Doja regrets not being a better partner after the breakup.
“You’re Right” (ft. The Weeknd)
Listen to it if you feel: like you’re lusting after someone you don’t hear
Key text: “I have a man, but I want you”
Over smooth and twinkling keyboards, Doja sings that despite having a partner, she still has secret fantasies about someone else. She knows it would be considered immoral and wrong, but still remains honest: “You know I have so much to say / I’m trying to hide it in my face.” The Weeknd is of course right up his alley here, reminding us that it’s human nature to have fantasies about other people sometimes. Listen to this song if you feel guilty for having them so you know you’re not alone.
Listen to it if you: considering ending a relationship relatie
Key text: “Honey, I don’t really wanna be like this / Since you’ve been like this”
Doja processes her fluctuating feelings for a partner due to major changes from them as a gentle fall blow slides underneath. The lyrics describe the partner as toxic: “Can’t put my trauma aside / When you told me I lied / Made me feel like I was dying, baby.” In the end, Doja happily breaks up with them. Let that be a lesson.
“Options” (feat. JID)
Listen to it if you feel: spicy, naughty and rough
Key text: “I don’t need love, cuffin’ late at night / Take it all off, naughty”
This song is about two lovers who are rough and playful with each other. Both aren’t shy about where they do it: “Kitchen, island, bedroom, closet” and “Now she’s trying to fuck me in the toilet or in the parking lot / In the restaurant, everywhere, everywhere, all the time.” Know you have options.
Listen to it if you feel: about someone’s nonsense
Key text: “Look at what you did”
Just one look at the song’s title stirs anger, and Doja delivers. As she sings about immature, unfaithful men who have wronged and hurt her, the 90s R&B rhythm makes it feel like a lost hit from time. This is the perfect song to listen to when you’re frustrated and dissatisfied with immature partners and their bullshit.
Listen to it if you feel: like a bad guy
Key text: “I pull up just like ooh, you a bad guy”
Doja reflects on how there were those who didn’t believe in her potential and how far she’s come despite the obstacles: “You couldn’t be more wrong / We show up and show out / Five hundred racks, sold out / I’ve never been so proud and “All this work paid off / When they had no faith at all.” She really is a bad guy.
Listen to it if you feel: confident and reflective
Key text: “Is it crazy that I’m not afraid to be alone?”
The R&B vibes of the 90s return, thanks to some soft strumming on acoustic guitars. Doja sings about how she finally worked through what she had to — “You couldn’t say we both needed a whole therapist” and “Now I barely need you” — as the perspective of a rainy day breakup comes into view. In her words, “Bein’ lonely better than ‘needs control’.” Ironically, her ex is now the one who is afraid of being alone.
“Kiss Me More” (ft. SZA)
Listen to it if you feel: brutally romantic, flirty and horny
Key text: “We cuddle, of course, I love it / But I need your lips on mine”
Planet Her finds its perfect ending with the iconic dance-pop lead single “Kiss Me More”. The song has romance, passion, daring sexual desires and tenderness all rolled into one. Cheeky and flirty verses give way to real horniness when she declares, “I feel like fucking something.” SZA follows suit – “Holy Grail pussy, you know that” – and both superstars show that romance and sex can be both sweet and spicy together.