Ahead of the release of Kanye West’s hugely-anticipated new album, we’ve gathered everything you need to know to get even more amped-up about the album’s drop.
After releasing The Life of Pablo in 2016 with features from Rihanna, Chance the Rapper and Kid Cudi, it’s safe to say that two years on, hype for another album release is reaching a fever pitch.
As seen on previous projects, West has worked with some of music’s finest, both on production and lyric composition. For his forthcoming project, many are wondering who’s likely to be a returning collaborator. How will he follow up his explosive gospel sounds? And when is the album expected to drop?
For these details and more, read on for a rundown of everything we know so far about Kanye West’s upcoming album.
A new ’Ye album is confirmed to be in the works.
In February 2017, Clipse member and G.O.O.D music artist Pusha T confirmed in a radio interview (which you can watch below) that Kanye West was working on new music.
Meeting with the hosts of 93.9’s The Fam in the Morning Show, the King Push artist revealed that, “’Ye is working on a new album.”
Similarly, in June that year, Def Jam CEO Steve Bartels sat down with Variety and revealed that “Kanye is working.”
The album is arriving June 1
West took to Twitter to share the date of the upcoming album, tweeting simply “June 1.” Rumors about the new album only started circulating recently, so the release is coming earlier than anticipated.
And it will feature just 7 songs
In the same tweet storm, West revealed that the album is just seven songs long, suggesting that he’s already finalized the tracklist. This would make it West’s shortest album yet, with all of his studio releases averaging over 10 songs.
‘Ye is also releasing a joint album with Kid Cudi
But we’re not just getting one album, West revealed that he also has an upcoming album with Kid Cudi in the works. The release is called Kids See Ghost which is apparently the name of their collaborative project. That album is due to arrive June 8.
West finds his “creative groove” in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
On March 13, Highsnobiety reported that Kanye West had been spotted in Jackson Hole, Wyoming to reportedly work on his upcoming album.
West, who skipped out on the Met Gala in May 2017, in addition to deleting all his social media accounts in the same month was then spotted traveling back and forth between Calabasas and the snowy landscapes.
A source told Page Six that the rapper was looking to get back into his “creative groove,” and further discussed how the relocation mirrored West’s creative process for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy where he settled in Hawaii to record the sessions.
“That’s his pattern. It’s what he always does,” the source told Page Six magazine. “He goes away. He’s done Hawaii, Mexico, Paris, Malibu… It’s what he’s always done. He’s not in some ‘struggle’ to find his creative voice. Any creative endeavor he’s done, there’s a start to the process and he wants to figure out what he talks about,” they continued. “It’s a creative journey every time and he starts from scratch.”
Nas, Kid Cudi, Travis Scott & others make a trip to Wyoming.
After reportedly choosing Jackson Hole as his recording location, a number of notable musical artists were also photographed touching down in Wyoming.
From the likes of famed rappers Mos Def, Nas, and Kid Cudi to younger artists Pi’erre Bourne and Travis Scott, here’s a quick look at potential collaborators for the upcoming album.
Talib Kweli took a snap of West sitting tight with rapper Mos Def.
Nas and Kid Cudi appeared to be in high spirits in Wyoming.
Rapper King Louie and singer-songwriter The Dream posted a quick picture at Jackson Hole airport.
Travis Scott shared a picture of himself on the slopes with the caption “Astroturf.” Scott, who previously contributed to YEEZUS was also rumored to have a West feature on his forthcoming album Astroworld.
Having made beats for the likes of Young Thug, Lil Uzi Vert and the collaborative Travis Scott x Quavo album, Atlanta producer Wheezy made sure he shared his admiration for Jackson Hole’s landscapes.
’Ye’s first cousin Tony Williams (who is also a credited artist on The Life of Pablo) managed to make an appearance at the Jackson Hole mountain resort.
West’s new album might feature Drake.
While there are little to no pictures of Drake himself, the rapper’s personal photographer uploaded several pics and clips located in Wyoming.
Additionally, Drake was overheard during a live gaming session that he had to “pack for Wyoming.”
If his songwriter credits on The Life of Pablo’s “30 Hours” is anything to go by, fans can likely expect a contribution from the Canadian rapper on the upcoming release.
PARTYNEXTDOOR could also make an appearance.
In July 2017, OVO artist PARTYNEXTDOOR took to Twitter to claim that he and West had new music on the way. Sadly there is no further explanation but we imagine that it could coincide with this upcoming project.
His new album is likely to sound like “Polo ’Ye.”
In an interview with Ebro and Crew on Hot ‘97 radio, model and G.O.O.D music signee Teyana Taylor revealed that she and West were working on new music. While remaining rather cryptic about the project, the actress did reveal that West was making a return to “Polo ’Ye.”
For many, this could suggest a return to sample-heavy productions such as “Through the Wire” or “Famous.” For others, West’s “polos and backpacks” era hallmarks the re-awakening of socially conscious lyrics as heard on “All Falls Down.”
Check out Taylor’s interview at 39 minutes and 25 seconds below for more information.
Rick Rubin expected to resume his role as executive producer.
In addition to the aforementioned guests spotted in Wyoming, producer Rick Rubin was recently snapped with West heading into the Calabasas office.
Rubin served as executive producer on West’s YEEZUS in 2013 and The Life of Pablo three years later. We’re expecting he’ll resume his role on West’s new album too.
West might be planning a tour already.
In 2016, West canceled the remaining dates of his ‘Saint Pablo’ tour after being hospitalized for exhaustion. A recent follow-up report by TMZ, however, has hinted that West was looking to get back on the road this year.
In June 2017, sources close to booking agent Live Nation revealed to the news site that West was in good form and was ready to start making appearances at live shows, more specifically, “we’re ready to jump as soon as he gives the green light.”
Keep it locked here for more info ahead of the record’s release.
- Photography: Jeff Kravitz / Getty Images