Beyoncé, reigning queen of the digital drop, has delivered another surprise album. With the help of a marching band reminiscent of the ones that perform at HBCUs in the United States, Beyoncé released Homecoming: The Live Album as a supplement to her 2018 Coachella performance.
Despite the fact that Beyoncé is known to drop a surprise album every couple of years, no one predicted that she would release an album of her live Beychella performance. After surprising everyone with the release of her self-titled album and accompanying videos in 2013, she one-upped herself with Lemonade just three years later. In 2018, she did it again when she and Jay-Z released their joint album, Everything Is Love, as the Carters. Then, over the course of eight months, Beyoncé wrote, directed, and produced a documentary, which features a few cameos from her husband and children. In the documentary, she can be heard in a voiceover explaining the “sacrifice” she had to make just 10 months after giving birth to twins in order to complete the documentary and perform as the first black woman to headline Coachella. “I definitely pushed myself further than I knew I could. And I learned a very valuable lesson. I will never, never push myself that far again,” she says.
The buzz that Beyoncé was working on a documentary was confirmed just a couple of weeks ago, when Netflix announced the April 17 release of Homecoming, a two-hour film that chronicles the singer’s creative process for her historic Coachella performance, but no one predicted that she would release an album along with it, and make it available across music-streaming platforms (not just on Tidal).
While Homecoming: The Live Album is a career-spanning album, featuring music from all six of Beyoncé’s studio albums and a few songs from her Destiny’s Child days, she’s also added a couple of live bonus tracks. One bonus track is her cover of Frankie Beverly and Maze’s “Before I Let Go” (which also interpolates Cameo’s “Candy”), and you should probably expect to hear it on the playlist at every cookout you attend this summer.