SZA has just taken to Twitter to announce that she has quit. She has said that Terrence “Punch” Henderson, Top Dawg Entertainment co-president, can release her upcoming album “if he ever feels like it.”
Edit: The tweet was deleted but luckily we screenshot it:
This is pretty alarming news considering that her upcoming album A was expected to be released soon. It is set to be the final in a three part trilogy, having already released S and Z.
We can only hope this is a knee-jerk reaction to, say, having a release-ready album sitting dormant for too long, rather than a permanent or definitive decision.
TDE have released records from Kendrick Lamar, ScHoolboy Q and Isaiah Rashad already in 2016, with releases from Jay Rock, Ab-Soul and TDE newcomer Lance Skiiiwalker all projected for the coming months.
In a year where two of this year’s best and most successful albums have come from one fiercely independent artist and one who silently abandoned in his label a day before release, the cracks in the music industry, particularly the relationship between artist and label, continue to unravel.
With that in mind, it’s not difficult to piece together the likelihood that her album has been ready for some time, and continues to be held back by TDE, be it for marketing and promotional reasons or other contractual obligations.
SZA is an incredibly talented artist and a much-needed voice in 2016 and beyond, especially considering she’s the only female signed to TDE.
SZA’s last release, Z, came out back in April 2014, and featured Chance the Rapper, Kendrick Lamar and Isaiah Rashad, all of whom have released stellar albums this year.
Earlier this year SZA released a new track twoAM, and she has featured on songs by Isaiah Rashad, Kendrick Lamar, Rihanna and ScHoolboy Q this year.
Read more: There needs to be more hype about SZA