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Boom: Behold the Beyonce bombshell

By | Published on Friday 13 December 2013


It’s alright everyone, Beyonce has recorded an album. And not just any album, an “unprecedented fourteen song, seventeen videos visual album”. And you all thought she was just being lazy.

The eponymous album – as you all undoubtedly know and have expressed an opinion on already – was made available as an iTunes exclusive this very morning. Though you have to buy it as a complete album (visual album), because that’s how Beyonce wants you to hear (see) it.

Explaining why she knocked together all these videos to go with her new music, Beyonce explains: “I see music. It’s more than just what I hear. When I’m connected to something, I immediately see a visual or a series of images that are tied to a feeling or an emotion, a memory from my childhood, thoughts about life, my dreams or my fantasies. And they’re all connected to the music”.

It’s lucky no one else experiences music like that, or you might think Beyonce was robbing us of experiencing her new album on our own terms. But she’s not. She’s giving us the gift of listening (seeing) like Beyonce. Or in the words of the press release, experiencing “a non-linear journey through the thoughts and visions of Beyonce”.

On the surprise release, the press blurb insists that this is “a fully designed preventative plan” against leaks. Which sounds a bit flimsy, but let’s just go with it.

Failing to reference that at all, Beyonce adds: “I didn’t want to release my music the way I’ve done it. I am bored with that. I feel like I am able to speak directly to my fans. There’s so much that gets between the music, the artist and the fans. I felt like I didn’t want anybody to give the message when my record is coming out. I just want this to come out when it’s ready and from me to my fans”.

Summarising, she concludes: “I just want to give my album to the people I love and respect and hope that they feel the same thing I felt when I made the music”.

In something of a coup, Beyonce has managed to get guest performances on the album from her husband Jay-Z and her daughter Blue Ivy. Drake, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Frank Ocean also appear, while video directors include Hype Williams, Beyonce and everyone’s favourite, Terry Richardson.

Here’s the (non-visual) tracklist:

Pretty Hurts
Drunk In Love (feat Jay-Z)
Mine (feat Drake)
***Flawless (feat Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie)
Superpower (feat Frank Ocean)
Blue (feat Blue Ivy)

And here are all the videos you get:

Pretty Hurts (directed by Melina Matsoukas)
Ghost (directed by Pierre Debusschere)
Haunted (directed by Jonas Åkerlund)
Drunk In Love (directed by Hype Williams)
Blow (directed by Hype Williams)
Angel (directed by @lilinternet)
Yoncé (directed by Ricky Saiz)
Partition (directed by Jake Nava)
Jealous (directed by Beyoncé, Francesco Carrozzini & Todd Tourso)
Rocket (directed by Beyoncé, Ed Burke & Bill Kirstein)
Mine (directed by Pierre Debusschere)
XO (directed by Terry Richardson)
***Flawless (directed by Jake Nava)
Superpower (directed by Jonas Åkerlund)
Heaven (directed by Beyoncé & Todd Tourso)
Blue (directed by Beyoncé, Ed Burke & Bill Kirstein)
Grown Woman (directed by Jake Nava)

Meanwhile, Facebook gets an exclusive premiere of part one of a documentary taking an in-depth look at the making of the album, called ‘Self-Titled’, which you can devote the next three minutes and 52 seconds of your life to here.