Beyoncé released her sixth solo album “Lemonade” Saturday night after the HBO premiere of her hourlong film based on the album. The album itself and its accompanying videos were made available exclusively through Tidal, the music streaming service owned by Beyoncé’s husband Jay Z.
The theme of many of the 12 tracks on the album is the experience of a woman scorned, drawing speculation about Beyoncé’s own relationship with Jay Z. “Lemonade” featured celebrity cameos including Zendaya, Amandla Stenberg, Quevenzhané Wallis and Serena Williams. Musically, the album features contributions from James Blake, Kendrick Lamar, the Weeknd and Jack White.
Fashion-wise “Lemonade” is chock-full. It opens with Beyoncé in cornrows and a fur coat, the image she teased on Instagram, and moves on to a yellow Roberto Cavalli by Peter Dundas gown she wears to gleefully wreck a city block with a baseball bat. She wears a tribal-printed outfit in party bus scene with dancers with tribal body paint. There’s a fiery red gown worn with an exaggerated necklace and headpiece, a metallic cone bra and regal headpiece look, and a high-collared, pouf-sleeve white lace body suit ensemble. Some of the looks are reminiscent of those featured in “Formation,” the single Beyoncé released in February a day prior to her Super Bowl performance, during which she and her dancers wore Black Panther-inspired looks. Wasting no time capitalizing on the release of the album, as well the recent launch of her ath-leisure line Ivy Park, the singer begins her Formation world tour April 27.
Beyoncé has teased “Lemonade” with a few cryptic social media posts, and the release of “Formation” indicated something big was to come, but it’s not the first album she has released as a surprise. In 2013 she dropped her self-titled album and its accompanying videos without warning, changing the rules of how musicians release music.