The new Frank Ocean "Channel Orange" album is now available for free streaming or download online. The first ever solo LP from the Odd Future singer arrives after he recently came out as gay or bisexual online, and comes a week ahead of its release date.
Ocean, who previously achieved popularity via his mixtapes, and by working with the likes of Kanye West and Jay-Z on
"Watch The Throne," decided to drop his first solo album early. Could it be to avoid a sales battle with another hip hop star, or to play off the headlines he made within the past weeks?
The website Hip Hop DX recently reported in a news update:
"Frank Ocean has released his major label debut Channel Orange to iTunes ahead of its release date. Download the album from iTunes, and stream the full project below via his Tumblr page."
Ocean has also unveiled a new song called "Pink Matter," which features rapper Andre 3000 as a guest. Previously he dropped the songs "Pyramids" and "Sweet Life" for fans to check out online ahead of this album.
Initially, this new album was scheduled for a July 17th release date. However, Ocean (and his PR people) may have realized a few things. One, the singer announcing he was gay or bisexual, could have led to releasing the album early. As ContactMusic.com reported, Keith Caufield, Billboard's associate director of charts, has commented on the situation, saying:
"'American Idol' alum Adam Lambert is one of the most recent gay pop stars to have a No.1 album, but things work differently on the urban-music front. For Frank, it's different. He's in the RnB and hip-hop world, and he's relatively under the radar to most people, but this is important, especially in light of Anderson Cooper."
The other aspect that may have had less of an impact on Frank Ocean releasing "Channel Orange" early is the fact he would be up against one of hip hop's biggest stars in Nas. Nas is scheduled to drop a highly anticipated new album, "Life Is Good," on July 17th. It's hard to say if that would have impacted Ocean's sales or Nas', so this probably played less of a role in the decision.
Most likely, Ocean realizes that his name is out there now, so he should capitalize off the popularity. Of course, it could have been more of a decision by "his people," and less the artist's idea to do this.
You can check out the Frank Ocean "Channel Orange" album free online at his Tumblr Page. If you've purchased it or already heard it, what do you think of the new LP?
Follow @MattClarkNews on Twitter for more music updates.
(Image Source: Amazon.com)