Beyoncé is back! This is not a drill.
After weeks of fan speculation and changes to her official website that remained shrouded in mystery with little more for the Beyhive to go on than the letter/number combination of “B7,” the Academy-Award nominated crooner stunned fans with the announcement of new music on the way.
In Beyonce’s enigmatic fashion, the announcement was teased overnight when limited edition mystery boxes were made available for purchase on her website in the wee hours of U.S. time zones. The package includes a limited edition “Renaissance box” containing a choice of tee featuring one of four poses – the cover art and design of which are each set to be revealed on a later date – and a collectible Compact Disk of the upcoming music. All options listed under the title act i. RENAISSANCE, and note they will be mailed out upon the July 29th album release.
Of course, all of this leaves space for even more fan speculation. What will the music sound like? How many tracks will there be? Visual album? And perhaps most importantly, if this is just act 1…how many more acts are on the way?
Some of the nature of the upcoming drop came into focus with Beyoncé’s second big surprise for her fans: a cover shoot with British Vogue.
While her British Vogue feature did not include much in the way of direct quotes, its author, Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful, captured the superstar’s calm, confident demeanor and detailed the sound and feeling captured by her upcoming release.
Enniful describes the project, which Beyoncé casually played for him from a laptop in her in-home recording studio, as featuring “soaring vocals and fierce beats” that instantly transported him to the club scene of his youth. He went on to describe the project as “music that makes you rise, that turns your mind to cultures and subcultures, to our people past and present, music that will unite so many on the dance floor, music that touches your soul.”
Beyoncé reportedly took her time crafting this album, describing it as a long process, Enniful notes, with the pandemic having given her much more time to scrutinize and retool each of her decisions, “just the way she likes it.”
The perceived enigma and inaccessibility surrounding Beyoncé makes her every public move and new announcements like these all that more alluring for fans. Enniful notes that though this is the byproduct, the reasoning for this wall around her personal life isn’t in service to her ego, but rather to protect her tight inner circle, which she personally described as “My earth, my heart, my soil and my sanity.”
act i. RENAISSANCE drops on July 29.