Kendrick Lamar is only hours away from returning to the music circuit in the biggest way possible and, on Thursday, the L.A rapper did a lot more than tease an album cover.
Kendrick Lamar unveils album cover
Mr Morale & The Big Steppas is Lamar’s fifth and final album under the Top Dawg Entertainment imprint. A lot has happened since we first heard from the rapper in August 2021, when he published an open letter to his fans about the next phase of his career as co-founder of pgLang.
“As I produce my final TDE album, I feel joy to have been a part of such a cultural imprint after 17 years. The Struggles. The Success. And most importantly, the Brotherhood. May the Most High continue to use Top Dawg as a vessel for candid creators. As I continue to pursue my life’s calling,” he wrote back then
Fans — and the industry too — knew back then that Lamar was on the way and yet, months later, only a matter of hours before the studio album, which was prefaced by a prolific addition to The Heart series, is uploaded on digital streaming platforms, his return still holds an element of surrealism.
This mystique, Lamar has carried with him in everything he does. Take, for instance, the album cover he unveiled on social media, on Wednesday.
Shot by revered photographer Renell Medrano, Lamar is seen with his back turned towards the lens, staring blankly into the light emitting from a window with a baby — possibly his daughter — clutched in his arms.
On his head, Lamar dons a crown of thorns and what appears to be a revolver tucked in his waist. While a lot can be pulled from the crown which, in Christian symbolism represents a mockery to monarchy, it’s the sighting of Lamar’s fiancee Whitney Alford holding a baby that caught our attention.
Things remain unverified since, in this case, Lamar and Alford enjoy ultimate privacy in their relationship, but the tease leaves much to be interpreted. Is Lamar a father of two? Only time can provide the answers.