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All Songs +1: The Season Of Surprise Albums, From Beyoncé To James Blake

Clockwise from upper left: Radiohead, James Blake, Beyoncé, Chance The Rapper (Courtesy of the artists)closemore
Clockwise from upper left: Radiohead, James Blake, Beyoncé, Chance The Rapper (Courtesy of the artists)

It really started nearly two weeks ago when Beyoncé surprise-released her monstrously good record, Lemonade, via an album-length video shown on HBO. Drake followed a few days later when he unloaded 20 new songs on fans with the epic album Views. Then Radiohead teased out some video clips — and eventually a new song called "Burn The Witch." James Blake quickly followed on Thursday with three unannounced songs and, a few hours later, a whole new album with 17 stunning tracks. A bit later on Thursday night, Chance The Rapper popped up on the Jimmy Fallon show with a new song and announced that his new album would be here on May 13. Now, as we close out the week, Radiohead is back again with another new song and news that a full album is coming at 2 p.m. ET Sunday, May 8.

On this week's +1 Podcast, All Songs Considered hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton are joined by NPR Music's Saidah Blount and Jacob Ganz to talk about why artists are resorting to stealthy tactics, what the deluge of surprise releases means for the way we listen and which ones we're spending the most time with.

Copyright NPR 2016.

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