Everything We Know About SZA’s Upcoming Album ‘CTRL’

Summer is approaching and there’s still no SZA album in sight. 

CTRL, the singer’s debut studio album and follow up to 2014’s EP Z, is expected to be incredible.

Not much is known about the album, which was initially expected to drop in February. SZA and Top Dawg Entertainment (TDE) have remained tight-lipped, with the exception of a few tweets that confirmed her album would arrive this year.

So, while we wait, let’s take a look at what we already know and what we can expect from SZA’s debut album.

The Album’s Influences

In an interview with Billboard, the singer shared a little about the album and its influences, including being the only black girl at sleepaway camp.

“I [wrote about] my younger life, which was haphazard: being at ­sleepaway camp away from my parents, being the only Black girl, not even noticing until I got older, dealing with boys, self-hate, growth and God. It’s the first time I’m literally writing about my life instead of figuratively writing about it.”

She also revealed that she got a little advice from super producer Rick Rubin. “I had this mentality that ‘more is more’ —more reverb, more background [vocals]. I played him a bunch of songs, and he would tell me, ‘The more you take away from any piece, the more room you create for everything else to be beautiful and grow.’ I never felt that before, the editing urge. Once you strip everything down, you’re forced to say something.”

“Drew Barrymore,” “Love Galore,” and “twoAM’’

Back in January, SZA played an intimate show in NYC where she shared some of the new music from her her album, two of those songs were lovelorn “Drew Barrymore” and the Travis Scott featured “Love Galore.”

Shortly after the event, SZA officially dropped “Drew Barrymore,” then TDE released a behind-the-scenes video that included 2016 Coachella footage, images of SZA in the studio listening to an R&B album, and clips of the singer at a skating rink.

In April, the singer dropped a  video for “Love Galore,” which included Travis Scott, butterflies, and a shocking ending.

There are also rumors that “twoAM,” the singer’s spin on PARTYNEXTDOOR and Drake’s “Come and See Me” might make it onto the album. Fingers crossed!

RCA Records

Shortly after releasing “Love Galore,” the singer announced that she’d signed to RCA Records. The deal looks to be a co-sign deal, with SZA still under the TDE umbrella. CTRL has been sitting on the sidelines for quite sometime and SZA’s issues with TDE are well-known, however, signing to RCA could mean the album’s release will come sooner rather than later. 

Summer Release

In April, during a Twitter Q&A, TDE boss Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith confirmed that SZA’s album would arrive this year and told fans that it would be released between Kendrick Lamar’s album, DAMN, which dropped in April, and Schoolboy Q’s upcoming album.

SZA also told NYLON in March that the album would drop “ridiculously soon.”

With the single and video for “Love Galore’’ out, it seems a summer release is on the way. The Travis Scott-featured track is poised to be one of the many songs of summer, so it would make sense for the singer’s introspective, love-filled album to drop during the year’s warmest months. 

BBQ’s and cool summer nights with SZA. Who wouldn’t want that?