Far be it for me to be snippy with an indescribably talented musician, but is it be too much to just reveal an album these days? Kendrick Lamar has offered just a scant amount of information about his forthcoming record, including a potential name, through an exceptionally obfuscated process.
In the early afternoon of August 20, Lamar uploaded a post to his otherwise empty Instagram account showing a folder labeled "nu thoughts." He linked to a site called Oklama, where he laid out a rhythmic poem of sorts.
"I spend most of my days with fleeting thoughts. Writing. Listening. And collecting old Beach cruisers," Lamar wrote. "I go months without a phone. ... While the world around me evolves, I reflect on what matters the most. The life in which my words will land next."
There's a tiny photo of Lamar in the studio at the bottom of the page and a big reveal: his next record, which may be called Oklama for all we know, will be his last one for Top Dawg Entertainment (TDE).
After Lamar's post went live, Anthony "Top Dawg" Tiffith, TDE's founder and CEO, responded on his own Instagram, confirming Lamar's departure from his label.
"With this being Dot's last album on TDE, this is more of a VICTORY LAP, a celebration," said Tiffith. "I know he will be successful in whatever it is he decides to do and will have our FULL support.
Fascinating stuff, to be sure. Lamar's sudden disclosure also speaks to the new hip-hop record roll-out process, what with Kanye and Drake also slowly parceling out excriatingly obtuse teasers (and little else) to fans.
To be fair, Lamar has been at this for a while already, overseeing his mysterious creative agency/brand pgLang since early this year. In fact, the pgLang project's obscured operation kinda recalls Frank Ocean's Homer.
Welcome to the new normal, where the world's foremost musical artists dole out news at a snail's pace. Then again, Kendrick Lamar is, deservedly, a Pulitzer Prize winner — though all the aforementioned creatives are undoubtedly gifted, Lamar especially can do whatever the hell he wants.