On 23rd April, Beyonce interrupted the music scene yet again with Lemonade, her sixth studio album. Lemonade is a composition of diverse genres including pop, blues, rock, hip hop, soul, funk, country, gospel, and trap. It features guest vocals from James Blake, Kendrick Lamar, The Weekend and Jack White. The album further contains samples and interpolations of a number of hip hop and rock songs.
The record was made available for online streaming on April 23 through the streaming service Tidal, which Beyoncé co-owns, and released for paid purchase through the service the following day. It was later launched for purchase by track or album to Amazon Music and the iTunes Store on April 25 and at physical retailers May 6. The record debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 485,000 copies in its first week (653,000 with additional album-equivalent units) earning Beyoncé her sixth consecutive number-one album. The album has spawned three singles –”Formation”, “Sorry” and “Hold Up”
Lemonade presents Beyonce as the queen of pop studio and maven of contemporary orchestral mode. In the album, it is apparent, the fury of a woman scorned becomes eccentric. One whose muses are by stark lyrical turns also sardonic, sarcastic, baleful, mournful, murderous, adulterous, self-devotional and self-resurrecting. The emotional role-play and array of musical settings are hot enough to melt a heart made of diamond. “Pray You Catch Me” and “Sandcastles” are standouts in this regard.
Despite its success, the album has not fallen short of controversies, in June 2016, it was reported filmmaker Matthew Fulks sued Beyoncé, Sony, Columbia and Parkwood Entertainment for allegedly lifting elements of his short film, Palinoia, for Lemonade. Fulks claims executives and creatives involved in Lemonade were aware of his work and had access to Palinoia. Fulks said he was previously contacted about the opportunity to direct a video by the Columbia-signed musical group MS MR and his clips — including Palinoia — were sent to various people at the label, including Beyoncé director, Bryan Younce. Fulks further claimed that in July 2015, Younce invited him to submit a video treatment to Columbia for consideration. Filming for Lemonade began five months later.