Beyoncé fans were psyched on Tuesday when her collabo with Andre 3000, "Party," leaked weeks before her new album is due. But they must have been flipping later in the day when all of 4 popped up online, three weeks before its official release date of June 28.
According to the Los Angeles Times, a short time after the Kanye West and Consequence-produced "Party" slipped out, another song, "Countdown," which samples the Boyz II Men tune "Uhh Ahh," also surfaced, followed by the entire album. The paper reported that while B's label has been frantically rushing to rip the 12-track album off sites that have posted it, a number of music blogs have removed "Party" and "Countdown" after getting cease-and-desist letters from the singer's lawyers.
Always one step ahead of the law, some online rogues have taken to Twitter to put up links to the music, making it harder for the label to track down the music. Fans have already gotten a number of listens at the first album since Beyoncé's 2008 double-disc I Am ... Sasha Fierce, including the uptempo dancehall first single "Run the World (Girls)," the lush ballad "1+1" and the second official single, "Best Thing I Never Had." Another tune, "End of Time," which samples late Afrobeat superstar Fela Kuti, has also leaked online.
If it makes Beyoncé feel any better, Lady Gaga's Born This Way leaked a few days before its official release and still went on to sell more than 1.1 million copies.
A spokesperson for Beyoncé's label could not be reached for comment on the leak at press time.