Updated on 4-01-2016: The Life of Pablo is now available on Apple Music, Spotify, and Google Play Music as well as for purchase on the musician’s own website. It remains unclear whether or not it will get a physical release.
It’s been a rocky road for those looking to get down with Kanye West’s recently-released album, The Life of Pablo. An ongoing release cycle for his latest record has stymied many would-be listeners by exclusively streaming on Tidal, though the young streamer from Jay Z is still reporting absolutely massive streaming numbers for it.
But the wait may soon be over for those with Apple Music, Spotify, Rhapsody, or other streaming subscriptions; despite Kanye’s assertion that his album would “never never never be on Apple,” The Life of Pablo may be coming to the Cupertino brand and all major on-demand streaming services as soon as this Friday, according to a recent report from Mashable.
In a strange move that only a mercurial star of West’s stature could make, the rapper has made significant changes to a dozen songs on the record, which originally hit public ears in February. West has gone so far as to add alternate vocal takes, new lyrics, and various other production tweaks to the material. Some believe that the record’s time on Tidal represents the final, last-minute changes West will make before the record goes live on other streamers.
If it’s not a massive April Fools joke from the artist, fans with subscriptions to Spotify, Apple Music, Rhapsody, and Google Play should all get their first taste of the record on Friday — if they aren’t among the droves of fans who jumped on Tidal’s free trial or pirated the record, that is.
My album will never never never be on Apple. And it will never be for sale… You can only get it on Tidal.
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) February 15, 2016
Even with the volatile nature of West’s actions of late, there’s good reason to believe that the album will actually appear on Tidal’s rival streaming services: Life of Pablo singles Famous and I Love Kanye have already been made available on Spotify and Apple Music, so full exclusivity of the record has already been breached.
If the Tidal-exclusive period that The Life of Pablo has endured proves to be more of a beta test than an official release — with Kanye constantly tweaking songs prior to a full-streaming service rollout — it may temper some of the anger and vitriol from fans who were refused broad access to the album in February.
Then again, with an unpredictable artist like Kanye at the wheel, you just never know what’s going to happen. Here’s hoping this latest rumor proves true.