As I’m sure you’ve seen or heard by now, Lupe’s third album Lasers hit Leakville early this morning, despite innovative campaigns to thwart it. Considering that his debut album, Food & Liquor, was the leak heard round the world, it always makes headlines whenever his work seeps out ahead of time. This afternoon, Twitter and Facebook were abuzz with critics – some authentic, most not – sharing their feedback on the album. The peanut gallery was in full peanut mode. Reviews were mixed, and I’ve yet to actually hear the project myself, so I can’t offer up a review of my own at this time. I’m going into it with a clear head; unlike I did with Kanye’s MBDTF, which pretty much leaked in full way ahead of its intended release. The Lu project has been securely guarded up until this point, so I’m going to approach it with fresh ears.
To add to the controversy, an interview Lupe conducted with Complex Magazine dropped today where he claims he hates the album. Well, he didn’t actually say that, but he did say he wasn’t happy with a few records he was forced to record to get it on shelves. I look at Lasers as a small victory as it took over three years (gasp!) for Atlantic to finally put the damn thing out. This is the record Atlantic wanted, so now it’s time for them to give it the full push. It may not be the album Lu wanted to make, but at least the product is now available for purchase. I’m not sure how many more albums he’s obligated to complete for Atlantic, but per the interview, it appears Lu is still interested in ditching the label. Either way, it shouldn’t take three years for Atlantic to drop an album from one of hip-hop’s biggest names, who consistently sells out venues across the globe. It just doesn’t make sense. Hopefully, Lasers is a success and Lupe finds a way to get the fans the music that didn’t make the cut. Perhaps Atlantic will make those available digitally or something? Who knows? Support the album next Tuesday, as Chicago doesn’t have many emcees still left in the major label system. And he’s talking about more than just garbage on the album – there’s actually substance here. Hopefully that’s not going unnoticed.