Throughout the years musicians have found creative ways to hype up an upcoming album. From the sudden to the slick here are some of the most epic album rollouts so far!
The internet was abuzz in the weeks preceding the release of Travis Scott’s latest album, Utopia. The tapes were supposedly inside the briefcase handcuffed to one of his bodyguards. The album was going to be premiered at the Great Pyramid of Giza before the Egyptian government shut it down. It was grandiose stuff, for a similarly massive (and boundary-pushing) record. Yet Travis was far from the first – here are a few other recent album rollouts that raised eyebrows and promoted the awesome music within.
Honorable Mention: Beyonce
Sometimes, the most epic album rollout is none at all…case in point. While there are quite a few artists that drop their albums unannounced, Beyonce’s in 2013 set the benchmark – even including a video for each song.
Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
This album is a callback to urban disco playgrounds…so they unveiled it in a middle-of-nowhere junction in the Australian outback. The town of Wee Waa became the amplifier for one of the greatest albums of the decade, and the population of 1,700 grew by thousands for the robotic pair.
Father John Misty – I Love You
Father John Misty created his own fake streaming service for his album I Love You, Honeybear in 2015. “Streamline Audio Protocol,” or “SAP,” hosted a cut-down version of his album before it came out, a jab at the compromised nature of the aforementioned Spotify and similar platforms.
Aphex Twin – Syro
While the name ‘Aphex Twin’ might not ring a bell, the man is a legend in the electronic music scene and has even found fans in the likes of Kendall Jenner. The album that Jenner-approved track is on, Syro, had a rollout for the ages. After a blimp bearing the Aphex logo was flown over London, the Brit shared the tracklist on the deep web before the album dropped.
Kanye West – Yeezus
This album stands out among Ye’s rollouts (which have ranged from amazing to frustrating). It was as sharp and simple as the album’s non-cover, but was highlighted by projecting the “New Slaves” video on dozens of buildings across the world.
Radiohead – In Rainbows
The British band’s rollout for this album is more ahead of its time (2007, while the rest of these are from the 2010s) than grand in scope, but it merits mentioning. It was self-released online and fans named their price (even nothing), years before Spotify was available in the U.S. The release inspired acts like Nine Inch Nails to improve upon the concept in the following months and paved the way for a new wave in widespread musical consumption.