After brief wait, Beyonce, Jay-Z take new album to Spotify

The joint album marries the styles of Jay Z and Beyonce, with songs driven by warm, sultry soul but with a hip-hop delivery.
The joint album marries the styles of Jay Z and Beyonce, with songs driven by warm, sultry soul but with a hip-hop delivery.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE

NEW YORK (AFP) - Beyonce and Jay-Z on Monday (June 18) brought their surprise joint album to all platforms including Spotify after a wait of little more than a day, relenting on keeping an exclusive for their fledgling Tidal service.

The music world's most famous couple late Saturday released Everything is Love, a soulful collaborative album on which the pair celebrate their marital bliss after rocky patches.

Since Jay-Z launched the Tidal streaming service in 2015, the couple has sought to draw subscribers by releasing their music on Tidal. Beyonce's 2016 album Lemonade and Jay-Z's 4:44 from last year remain absent from Spotify, although they are available for purchase on iTunes and on CD.

Everything is Love, however, found its way early Monday onto Spotify and rival services such as Apple Music and Deezer as well as iTunes. The couple did not immediately comment on the decision or reveal details on an eventual physical edition.

The move is an at least tacit recognition of Tidal's laggard market position and the need for artists to embrace Spotify if they are seeking to dominate the charts.

Spotify said last month that it had 75 million paying subscribers, with another 99 million monthly users on its free, advertising-backed tier. Apple, its closest competitor, said in March that its three-year-old streaming service had 38 million paying subscribers. Tidal said in 2016 that it had three million subscribers but has not provided further updates.

Dagens Naeringsliv, a business newspaper in Norway where Tidal had its roots before Jay-Z's purchase, last month said that the company had been inflating its figures, a charge the firm denied.

Beyonce on Everything Is Love sounded unperturbed by her absence on Spotify, at least for her Grammy-nominated Lemonade. "If I gave two f***** about streaming numbers, I would have put Lemonade up on Spotify," she sings on Nice, now streaming with the rest of the album on Spotify.