New Kanye West album leaks

Kanye West's new album Yeezus leaked online Friday, four days before its official release, but the US rapper appeared unconcerned as the Internet went crazy over his latest record.

The much-anticipated album - due to be officially released Tuesday - immediately became a top Twitter trending subject, while instant reviews were largely positive.

It was not immediately clear if the leak was part of a marketing strategy or was a genuine non-deliberate release. The album includes contributions from French electro artists Daft Punk, Frank Ocean, Justin Vernon and Kid Cudi.

The 36-year-old held a public listening session for media in New York on Monday for the new album recorded in Paris and Los Angeles, his sixth solo record, without preventing anyone from recording what they heard.

Pop culture and technology website Mashable said its representative was among 100 or so people at the session, and that West's record company staff appeared to have no qualms about the music leaking.

Mashable quoted the rapper himself as telling those present: "I have this new strategy. It's called no strategy," adding with expletive accompaniment: "This album is all about giving."

Rolling Stone called the album "the darkest, most extreme music Kanye has ever cooked up, an extravagantly abrasive album full of grinding electro, pummeling minimalist hip-hop, drone-y wooz and industrial gear-grind.

"Every mad genius has to make a record like this at least once in his career," the music bible added, giving the album 4.5 stars out of five.

The New York Daily News gave it a five-star review, saying: "Everything about the album ups the ante of its advance press: It presents Kanye as nothing less than the Johnny Rotten of his generation."

"The entire disc rethinks industrial rock of the early '90s for both a new era and genre," the newspaper's critic added.

In the past, West has taken extreme precautions to prevent pirating of his music, limiting the number of people involved to reduce the risk of files leaking by email or other means.

- AFP

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