“Nothin’ but 93!” Don Toliver shouts as he fuels up his white McLaren, smiling from under a pink bucket hat. “Premium in that thing!” 

We’re in the Rice Village neighborhood of Houston, Texas, about 15 miles and a few tax brackets from the neighborhood Toliver grew up in, Alief, which is also known as “the S.W.A.T.” (South West Alief Texas). After he helps me figure out how to open the car’s butterfly doors, we set out on an afternoon joyride through his old stomping grounds, celebrating the release of his debut studio album, Heaven or Hell.

The last two years have been a tumbling snowball of positive momentum for Toliver, who dropped his 2018 mixtape, Donny Womack, a day before the release of his breakout contribution to Travis Scott’s “Can’t Say.” He followed this by starring in his own full chapter of Scott’s Look Mom I Can Fly Netflix documentary, earning his first solo Billboard Hot 100 entry with the viral TikTok anthem “No Idea,” and stealing the show on the JACKBOYS compilation album alongside his fellow artists on Scott’s Cactus Jack imprint.

Instead of shouting “My life a movie!” for an hour, which anyone driving a McLaren is certainly within their right to do, the usually tight-lipped Toliver approached his afternoon with Complex in another way. Before driving to his hometown Heaven or Hell album release party, he queued up a series of nostalgic songs and narrated his own life as a five-act film.

This is the Don Toliver Story.

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