Kanye West’s sixth studio album, which was veiled in secrecy for months until West played it in its entirety for critics and associates on Monday, has made its way online.
Although the album was reportedly unavailable for pre-order, some savvy Internet user appears to have tracked it down and made it available for download. The album first became available on a password-protected file-sharing website shortly after 12:30 pm Friday, and has since circulated around the Internet.
The back cover of the CD has also leaked, which shows the many samples and songwriters involved in West’s newest construction. Among those sampled include Nina Simone, whose version of ‘Strange Fruit’ gets center stage on ‘Blood on the Leaves.’
The apparently leaked photo shows West’s new single ‘New Slaves’, along with songs titled ‘Awake with the Dark’, ‘Lightning’, ‘Onsite’, ‘God (Interlude)’, ‘Chained’, ‘Perfect’, ‘Boxed Out’, ‘Black Skinhead’, ‘The Follower’, ‘Hyper Critical’, ‘In The Heavens’ and ‘Demon’.
The image also reveals alleged collaborators, including Frank Ocean, Tyler The Creator, RZA, James Blake, John Legend, Jay Electronica, Travi$ Scott, Chief Keef, and Ma$e. However, the picture doesn’t include rumoured collaborators Daft Punk and Skrillex.
The title takes its name from the lyrics to the song, which describes in horrifying detail the lynching of a black man, says the LA Times.
“I wanna explain something about the title ‘Yeezus,'” Kanye West said, according to UPI. “Simply put West was my slave name and ‘Yeezus’ is my god name.”
However for all this leak West himself is likely to blame. At a recent listening party in New York city, where the rapper previewed his latest work in full, he allowed invitees to record and share whatever they felt was worthy.
When asked whether attendees could record audio and video, someone at West’s label said they didn’t have any qualms with the music leaking. West continued this nonchalant mentality when he grabbed the mic at several occasions to talk about Yeezus, reports Mashable.
“I have this new strategy. It’s called no strategy,” West said. “This album is all about giving. This whole process is all about giving no f*cks at all.”
“The whole way this whole album was put together, the amount of producers that came together for it, and the way we worked on this shit really collectively, collaboratively, we really didn’t give a f*ck what nobody else said — outside looking in or anything. We just wanted to make the best product possible,” West said.
The listening party included the four songs already available online (“New Slaves,” “Black Skinhead,” “I Am God” and “Can’t Handle My Liquor”) — via Saturday Night Live clips and footage captured at last weekend’s Governor’s Ball — as well as the rest of the album.
What makes the leak surprising is the fact that the album might not even be completely finished. According to reports earlier this week, West was still “tinkering” with the final product.
There is also the fact that an industry source said West has brought in Rick Rubin as executive producer, who is believed to have recorded additional tracks for the record.