POPCulture

Beyonce Releases Surprise Self-Titled Album Exclusively on iTunes

Singer Beyonce performs on stage at the "Chime For Change: The Sound Of Change Live". Photo courtesy Ian Gavan/Getty Images

Nobody can make a statement quite like pop megastar Beyoncé. The triple threat diva released her new, self-titled album, “BEYONCÉ,” exclusively on iTunes. Avoiding the traditional rules of an album release, Beyoncé just rewrote the rules her way — No promotion. No buzz. No teasers. Just “Here’s my album, now see what I’ve created.” Wow.

beyonce-album-cover

“Stripped of gimmicks, teasers and marketing campaigns, this project is truly about art before hype.” — Beyonce’s press release.

BEYONCÉ,” the singer’s fifth studio album, builds on its predecessors “B-Day” and “I Am…Sasha Fierce,” by pairing each song on the album with an accompanying video.  While not a concept album, the record is designed to be consumed as a comprehensive audio/visual piece from top to bottom. The antithesis of making singles, the visual album is a non-linear journey through the thoughts and visions of Beyoncé. 

Described as a “visual album,” “BEYONCÉ” consists of 14 songs and 17 videos. Clocking in at 67 minutes (songs only), the album features collaborations with husband Jay Z and daughter Blue Ivy, former Destiny’s Child band members Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams, and many more including Drake, Frank Ocean, Justin Timberlake and Pharrell Williams. Beyoncé was extremely hands on with the project, serving as a writer, producer and director.

“I see music,” the 32-year-old entertainer said in a press release shortly after the album’s release on iTunes. “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.”

That the album is available on the day the world is learning about its release is an unprecedented strategic move by the artist to deliver music and visual content directly to her fans when she wants to and how she wants to, with no filter. This unique approach allows music fans to be the first to listen, view, engage and form their own opinions void of any middleman. In the age of social media and an insatiable appetite for direct communication, this is the answer to the question asked over and over again, when is Beyoncé’s next album coming?

“I didn’t want to release my music the way I’ve done it,” said Beyonce regarding her 

beyonce-album-booklet-picdecision to forgo a traditional release. “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.”

“Beyoncé” is available for $15.99 on iTunes. Individual songs will be available for purchase on December 20, 2013.

About the author

Ryan White-Nobles

Ryan White-Nobles is Editor-in-Chief of TVSource Magazine. He's a natural #Heel who loves a spirited debate and probably watches too much TV. Follow him on Twitter at @SourceRyan to discuss all things TV, soaps, sports, wrestling and pop culture.

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