The summer season has officially started! This means music artists are fighting for their spot on the summer top charts. With her freshman album CTRL reaching its five-year anniversary, SZA has just released CTRL (Deluxe) on all streaming platforms. Does this mean a longer wait for the debut of SZA’s highly anticipated sophomore album? Only time will tell, but let’s look at what went into CTRL and how it stays on repeat into 2022!
Before SZA Took Control
SZA already made a name for herself in the music industry prior to her first album’s release. She had two extended plays, also known as EPs, released in early 2010. Her unique sound and talent allowed her to sign on with Top Dawg Entertainment and create Z, her third EP released in 2014. Along with the success of her own music, SZA also collaborated with other big-name artists at the time. She was one of the co-writers behind Beyonce and Nicki Minaj’s “Feeling Myself” as well as a collaborator and feature on Rihanna’s “Consideration.”
Ready to make her solo debut in 2014, SZA began writing CTRL. With the assistance of record producer Rick Rubin, SZA turned her feelings into a neo soul sound that captivated millions. Taking inspiration from music in the 1940s and 1980s, she combined her inspirations with the synths and trap beats of the modern day. Her aspiration was to create a piece that had the ability to grow and stand on its own.
The Release of CTRL
The freshman album was originally set to debut back in 2015, however SZA’s anxieties had pushed her to the limit. This led to SZA delaying the launch by two whole years before finally being released to the public on June 9, 2017. The pressure and fear for SZA stemmed from her sharing her story of love and heartbreak to millions of eager listeners. In fact, SZA has made previous statements that CTRL was written about a past relationship with a libra man. Because the album is so personal, she refined everything to the best of its ability before its release.
After its launch, CTRL reached three on the U.S. Billboard Top 200 and eighteen on the U.S. Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums in 2017. The album is currently certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Her single “Love Galore,” featuring rapper Travis Scott, was also certified platinum within the same year of its release. Despite CTRL being SZA’s only studio album to date, it still makes its way around to listeners today.
The Start of a SZA Summer
The release of CTRL (Deluxe) has brought fans hope that SZA will soon release newly recorded music. The seven new tracks in the deluxe album were all recorded back with the original album. This means that while these singles might be new to the public, many listeners already had their share of the once unreleased singles on SoundCloud well before their official drop. In addition, the speculations that the deluxe version of CTRL features any recent music SZA has recorded are disconfirmed.
SZA has made several comments about her new music drop, whether it’s from social media, or on the Vogue Red Carpet for the 2022 Met Gala. The highly anticipated “SZA Summer” has officially begun. Will the sophomore album make its release this year? Is there the possibility that fans will have to wait another few years before SZA is ready to release? Regardless, active listeners to SZA are pleased to see she is eager to give us more.