Travis Scott has erected billboards for his next album, Utopia, along the Interstate 10 in So-Cal, a marketing move very clearly targeting Coachella attendees slated to begin arriving in Indio, California this Friday.
Utopia's rollout has faced long delays in the face of fallout from Scott's Astroworld festival, where 10 people died in a crowd surge during the rapper's performance. The album's new release date has yet to be confirmed, though Scott's marketing push certainly suggests it's imminent.
The series of four billboards advertise Scott's Cactus Jack logo along with phrases including "PSST," "Looking for UTOPIA?" and "WRONG WAY" — a message that may have been decided on before Coachella canceled Scott's performance, as it appears on the highway headed away from the festival.
Of course, the question remains: is it too soon for Scott to re-enter the proverbial chat?
In the five months following Astroworld, the musician has divided the public on his — or rather, his PR reps' — approach to crisis management.
There was his Instagram Live addressing the fatalities, a clip that was widely mocked for Scott's seemingly hollow display of emotion. Then, in his first post-Astroworld interview, he claimed he was unaware anyone had died during his concert until "minutes before the press conference."
Combined with his legal team's denial of responsibility in the tragedy, Scott's response to the magnitude of what went down seemed largely disingenuous.
Most recently, though, Scott launched Project HEAL, a multi-tiered charitable initiative that, in part, will help address event safety. (A commendable effort, to be clear.)
It's been less than a year since Astroworld claimed the lives of 10 attendees, a tragedy that the victims' families are surely still struggling to process. Forget any debate surrounding Scott's liability — the move to ostentatiously promote his music mere months after disaster (on the way to a music festival, no less) strikes as insensitive.