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Beyoncé Announces New Album in Super Bowl Commercial

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Music|Beyoncé Announces New Album in Super Bowl Commercial

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/11/arts/music/beyonce-super-bowl-act-ii-country-album.html

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The pop superstar used a Verizon ad to tell fans fresh music is on the way. A country-themed follow-up to "Renaissance," which she referred to as "Act II," will arrive on March 29.

Beyoncé had said her 2022 album "Renaissance" was part one of a "three act project." "Act II" is coming on March 29.Credit...The New York Times

After days of speculation and online sleuthing by fans — just another week, in other words — Beyoncé used her appearance in a Super Bowl commercial on Sunday to announce that she would soon be releasing new music.

In a Verizon ad that ran shortly after halftime, Beyoncé joked with the comedian Tony Hale about doing something that would "break the internet" (i.e. Verizon's 5G network). She ran through a few riffs, like "Beyonc-A.I.," a Barbie-like "Bar-bey" and a presidential "BOTUS."

Then she said, "Drop the new music," before the commercial ended. Soon after, Beyoncé's website updated with the announcement that a new album, identified as "Act II," would be released on March 29.

It appeared to be the second part of Beyoncé's "Renaissance" album project, and perhaps one with a country-rock theme, given the sound and look of two new songs, "Texas Hold 'Em" and "16 Carriages," that quickly appeared online.

"Texas Hold 'Em" begins with rapid-plucked banjo — played by the performer and songwriter Rhiannon Giddens, known for her explorations into American history — and guitar, before moving into a stomping beat, with Beyoncé rhyming "Texas" and "Lexus" and singing lines like, "It's a real live boogie and a real live hoedown." On "16 Carriages," an epic ballad, the guitars swell with organ-loud percussion as Beyoncé sings about looking back at a life after losing innocence "at an early age."

Both songs have contributions from the producer Raphael Saadiq, whose many collaborators have included Beyoncé's sister Solange, and who also worked on the first "Renaissance" album.

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