Kanye West back to work on new album – everything we know so far

The follow-up to 'Ye's seventh album 'The Life of Pablo' is reportedly well underway

Well, we’ve been waiting for some time, haven’t we?  It was way back in February 2016, two weeks after the release of Kanye West‘s divisive ‘The Life of Pablo’ (we reckon it’s awesome, btw), when the rapper tweeted that “My next album is titled “Turbo Grafx 16″ as of now…” Given that ‘TLOP’ had gone through a few name changes, from ‘So Help Me God’ to ‘SWISH’ , there’s every chance that ‘Ye has changed the name a thousand times since that tweet.

He can call the album whatever hell he wants – we just want it in our earholes right now. Here’s everything we know about Kanye’s mystery upcoming eighth album.

When will Kanye West’s new album be released?

Yeezus works in mysterious ways, as people don’t quite say. There’s no official release date for his new album, though the work’s clearly been ongoing for a whole, given that Kanye’s pal Ibn Jasper ‘grammed a photo from the studio back in February 2016.

A source close to West’s camp told E! News on March 13 that the rapper was “really focusing on getting tracks done” in his Wyoming studio [see below] and that he’s keen to release something “very soon”.

“He thinks by being at the mountains, he doesn’t have many distractions and can have a more clear sense of direction for his music,” the source said. “That is why he usually escapes there when he is in the zone to get things done.

“Kanye wants to release something ‘very soon’ and is really excited about getting back into the creative game.”

We’ll update this article with more information as it becomes available; Kanye continued to tinker with ‘The Life of Pablo’ on Tidal for months after its release, calling the project “a living breathing changing creative expression”, and this may be no different.

TURBO GRAFX 16 day 1 #PABLo #MikeDean #CUDi #PlainPat

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What can we expect from the new album?

Two tracks, ‘Euro (Switch Hands)’ and ‘Hold Tight’, leaked in summer 2017. The former features A$AP Rocky, with Migos and Young Thug appearing on the latter. Both are brooding and trap-influenced, hinting that an upcoming album might see ‘Ye make a return to the introspective vibe of 2008’s ‘808s & Heartbreaks’, though there’s no confirmation that the tracks will contribute to a new collection.

It’s even been suggested that he’s turned to Sufjan Stevens for inspiration, given that, in May, Kanye tweeted a screengrab to show that he had been listening to the melancholic crooner’s music.

In November 2017, rapper Desiigner told the publication Montreality: “Kanye is doing great man, he’s staying focused… You know, he’s a busy man. He got the art going on, he got the album and also he got the label and then, first and foremost, he has a family. He’s coming up, the album is about to be crazy, we working, man. G.O.O.D. Music – we forever, baby.”

Have any guests been confirmed?

Black Star rapper Talib Kweli recently ‘Grammed a photo of Kanye, hip hop legend Mos Def and comedian Dave Chapelle with the caption “2018 looking good…”, fuelling speculation that the group has been working on something together – perhaps the new Yeezy record.

2018 is looking good…

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Is a tracklist available?

Maaaaaybe. In December 2016, producer Pete Rock ‘grammed a video of a studio (YouTube upload below), with the caption: “playing 45s in da lab with Kanye West.” Eagle-eyed fans spotted a notepad, which may contain a tracklist, as below, or might simply be a list of his favourite video games.

1. Metroid Other
2. Muramasa the Demon Blade
3. New Super Mario Bros
4. No More Heroes 2
5. Okami
6. Pikmin 2
7. Rabbids Go Home
8. Red Steel 2
9. Resident Evil
10. Silent Hill
11. Sin & Punishment 2
12. Sonic Colors
13. Super Mario Galaxy Pt. 1 & Pt. 2
14. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom

The Turbo Grafx 16 was a cult ’80s games console and you may have clocked the unsubtle videogame references in these track names. Let it be known: Kanye West is not a man who does things by half measures.

Where has Kanye West been recording his new album?

It’s been reported that Kanye retired to a mountaintop in Wyoming to work on the project. This was back in May 2017, around which time Kanye deleted his main social media profiles. Because there’s nothing more distracting than Minions memes when you’re on a Wyoming mountaintop, trying to make a masterpiece.


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And now he’s back at work on the album in Wyoming now?

According to social media sightings, yes – Yeezy is back in the Wyoming snowtops. He’s been joined this time by a whole host of possible collaborators: Nas, Kid Cudi, Travis Scott, King Louie, The-Dream, A$AP Bari, Tony Williams, Wheezy, Mike Dean and Pi’erre Bourne.

Oh and, of course, Kim Kardashian has paid a visit too.

Is Drake going to be on the album?

That’s what the internet detectives think, with some pointing out how a railing in a photo taken by Kim Kardashian in Wyoming looks very similar to one posted by Drake’s personal photographer Theo Skudra. Hopefully their team-up will be better than last year’s ‘Glow’.

How excited should we be about Kanye’s new album?

Put it this way: way in March 2016, Migos member Quavo caused mass panic among music fans the world over when he ‘grammed the above photo from the studio with the caption: “TURBO.” The snap features the rest of Migos, along with Big Sean, ‘Ye’s protégé Vic Mensa, Lil Yachty and Kanye himself – and if that doesn’t make you excited, reader, may we gently suggest you retire to a mountaintop in Wyoming and have a good, hard think about things.