A VMAs performance, a ‘Video of the Year’ Award and five custom Versace looks in the last 72 hours, it’s hard to believe Lil Nas X could possibly level up… but that he has done.
In anticipation of his debut album, MONTERO dropping on the 17th September, the singer has been strumming up conversation, controversy and viral trends; spurring headlines suggesting he is the newly crowned king of Gen Z marketing.
Initially announcing the album by way of a satirical pregnancy announcement, (metaphorically “giving birth” to his baby MONTERO) his TikTok video saw over 5.1 million views. Further, picking up traction when the 22-year old posed for a full maternity shoot for People Magazine.
What has caught people’s attention the most however, is a series of billboards set up in the Hollywood area in promotion of the album. Capitalising on his contentious reputation and dissent towards conservative criticism, the billboards have similar creative elements to religious organisation advertisements— with single line statements or questions and a background loosely reminiscent of what one would expect “heaven” to look like.
The true irony (and genius), however lies in the questions and statements on Lil Nas X’s billboards, reading questions such as:
“Gay? You may be entitled to financial compensation!”
“Do you miss the real America!? Visit welcometomontero.com to see how we can take our country back!”
“Afraid of the COVID vaccine!? Go to welcometomontero.com to see what our government is hiding from you!”
The website and QR codes directing users to a pre-save or follow link on Spotify & Apple Music for the upcoming release, or past music videos.
Combining his nuanced understanding of the Internet, ability to trigger organic virality (see: Satan shoes) and his overarching mission to empower queer expression and liberation, MONTERO has become the 10th highest streamed album on Spotify, despite being released for less than 24 hours.
The album is compromised of 15 tracks, including collaborations with artists such as Miley Cyrus, Doja Cat, Jack Harlow & Sir Elton John and was written and produced by Lil Nas X alongside Kanye West and Omer Fedi, amongst others.
MONTERO is available to stream now. Listen here.
And that’s on Lil Nas X being the king of the Internet.