Beyonce cemented her status as the queen of surprise releases with a completely new album and videos called “Lemonade” via a widely anticipated one-hour special on cable network HBO.
During the show in Los Angeles on Monday, Beyoncé appeared to address long-standing rumors of trouble in her marriage with rapper Jay Z, which ignited social media as fans breathlessly enthused about its content and debated the programme.
After leveling accusations in her lyrics about being cheated on, Beyonce made clear in the last tracks of the new album that she had decided to reconcile with him and continue the marriage.
In a preview last week, the singer teased fans with a snippet promoting the show, mysteriously intoning; “the past and the present merge to meet us here.’’
“What are you hiding? Why can’t you see me? You’re the love of my life.”
Fans, who wondered if Saturday’s show was to be a concept video with new music from Beyonce, the R&B star found out on Saturday that was pretty much the case.
This was with chapters carrying titles that riffed on the grieving process stages such as anger, denial and forgiveness.
Before the end of the programme which featured a compilation of music videos, vignettes, vintage, home-movie style footage and poetry, Beyonce, 34, had dropped “Lemonade” onto the Tidal streaming service.
The film was also available via Tidal.
Videos also featured appearances by the mothers of two black men, Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin, whose shooting deaths in Brown’s case by a Missouri police officer, have trained a spotlight on U.S. racial tensions.
Fans posting on social media such as Twitter were especially engaged with speculation about the content of the show and songs as they related to Beyonce and Jay Z, making references in postings about “women scorned” and the singer “dropping” both an album and a divorce, seemingly at the same time.
Beyonce previewed work from the new album just before his Super Bowl appearance this year when she debuted her single, “Formation.”
Beyonce’s last album in 2013 was also marked by a surprise release as she kicks off her new tour this week in Miami. (Reuters/NAN)