Four years. Rampant speculation. Self-styled intrigue.
Finally, the wait is over. Following the release of visual album Endless and single "Nikes", Frank Ocean has followed up by dropping a second album Blonde, though the project had long-gone by the moniker of Boys Don't Cry.
The album features "Nikes", as part of a 17-track LP featuring an impressive gallery of guest appearances: including Beyoncé, Kanye West, Pharrell, Andre 3000, Tyler The Creator, James Blake, Jamie xx, and Rick Rubin. Rolling Stone reports the release was accompanied by copies of a print publication bearing the old title, Boys Don't Cry, turning up in pop-up shops set up in New York, London, Chicago, and Los Angeles.
The 360-page magazine features interviews with Ocean's mother and Lil B, alongside Ocean's own photography; with a multi-scene screenplay penned by Ocean, horoscopes, and a section entitled "hopes and dreams". The album's artwork was shot by Wolfgang Tillmans, whose track "Device Control" features on Endless.
However, the magazine's tracklist differs from the released album, for example excluding "Nikes"; which perhaps lends support to Ocean's Tumblr post that, "I got two versions".
Now, you can currently only listen to Blonde here, on Apple Music and iTunes; with the album featuring as a two week exclusive before, presumably, it turns up on alternative streaming services such as Spotify.
Though hints on Ocean's official website appeared to point to several release dates - ranging from last July, this July, and most recently 5 August - the singer's producer has insisted there never was a fixed date for its release.
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