Want to see what Beyonce was doing in Brunswick?
Two months after the superstar singer was captured in a white leotard on the steps of a Brunswick home and the resulting music video 'No Angel' has been released.PT1M35S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2zdkt 620 349 December 14, 2013
Royalty has always made its own rules and so it is with the self-proclaimed queen of pop. Beyonce caught the music world napping on Friday, dropping her new album on iTunes without warning.
Even her Australian record label, Sony music, was caught unawares.
Beyonce on a shoot in Beith street, Brunswick.
The self-titled album has 14 tracks and 18 videos and is her fifth solo release.
The video for No Angel featured Beyonce's shoot from the inner Melbourne suburb of Brunswick. Her crew cased the suburb for suitable locations while she was here in late October, prompting 80-year-old Beith Street resident Jeanette Meadows to wonder what the fuss was about. Apparently it was about No Angel.
In the clip, Beyonce sings from the front porch of a decaying weatherboard Brunswick cottage wearing a skimpy white cossie and white furs. The rest of the clip features footage of an assortment of stern-faced down-and-out people from apparently poor inner-city US neighbourhoods. They might be even less impressed if they knew Beyonce used a largely hipster Melbourne suburb to mimic their neighbourhoods.
Beyonce on her Mrs Carter Tour. Photo: AP
The album is something of a family affair, as husband and rapper Jay-Z and their 23-month-old daughter Blue Ivy both appear on the songs and videos. Other collaborators include Australia's songwriting queen Sia, Frank Ocean, Pharrell Williams, Drake and Miguel.
The announcement came via Twitter, as Columbia Records tweeted ''#Beyonce The Visual Album. 14 songs 17 videos available now on iTunesMusic'', with a link to the album on iTunes.
Without any other announcement, no sneak peeks or album leaks — let alone a viral marketing campaign — the social media went into overdrive and iTunes was sent into meltdown.
"I didn't want to release my music the way I've done it," the singer said in a press statement issued shortly after the release. "I am bored with that. I feel like I am able to speak directly to my fans. There's so much that gets between the music, the artist and the fans. I felt like I didn't want anybody to give the message when my record is coming out. I just want this to come out when it's ready and from me to my fans."
She also gushed: "I see music."
"It's more than just what I hear. When I'm connected to something, I immediately see a visual or a series of images that are tied to a feeling or an emotion, a memory from my childhood, thoughts about life, my dreams or my fantasies," she went on to say in a video posted on Facebook.
Beyonce reflected on the days when Michael Jackson's Thriller would first come out and how it was "an event", and how she misses that "immersive experience" because people now are only listening to a few seconds of a track on their ipod.
"They don't really invest in an album, it's all about the single and the hype."
The release is a far cry from the massive marketing campaigns of many of her peers, including Jay-Z, who promoted his latest album Magna Carta Holy Grail via a global multi-million dollar campaign.
She was in Australia just last month, playing to sell-out crowds on her sell-out Mrs Carter Show world tour.