Lil Nas X's debut album, Montero has been in the works for some time now, and amid his consistently viral smash hits like the Montero single and Industry Baby, the rapper has been working away to make his first album - which is now finally here, and its giving queer coded utopian fantasy to the extreme - as it should!
Alongside its arrival, Lil Nas X dropped the music video to That's What I Want, one of the tracks on the album, which shows Nas X get hot and heavy in a locker room with a fellow footballer, interspersed with heavy Brokeback Mountain references and even a Billy Porter cameo. It is simply, hot, transgressive, and divine.
For the album, the 22-year-old rapper masterfully merges hip-hop and pop, signaling the turn of a new era for the sub-genre we know as hip-pop. Exploring themes of self-acceptance, queer romance, and navigating familial issues—serving as a chronology, interweaving Nas’ past and present, while looking to his future. In a world where Drake is putting R. Kelly samples on his album and Kanye West is featuring vocals from Marilyn Manson, Lil Nas X is proving that subversion is still possible without being harmful, with an album that feels as though it unapologetically explores the queer experience.
i love joking but on a serious note making this album was therapy for me. i began healing many unchecked wounds, facing skeltons in my closet i never wanted to, fighting internally every day and crying persistently, MONTERO is truly my baby. thanks for the love
— MONTERO (@LilNasX) September 18, 2021
Shared via Nas X's Instagram and Twitter, the rapper cited John Stephens’ Genesis II artwork as inspiration for the cover album cover, and included a Book of Genesis quote: “Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.”
“The album art is a continuous loop,” he adds, “to represent the circle of life.” The visuals are heavy with symbolic, vibrant details such as cocoons, rainbows forming a circle, and even a tiny Lil Nas X blowing a comparatively giant bubble in the corner. He also hilariously cited a visual from Spongebob as inspiration, just in case you thought he might be getting serious on the internet.
— MONTERO (@LilNasX) August 31, 2021
Off the back of the cover release, Lil Nas X also dropped the tracklist, which sees appearances from the likes of Megan Thee Stallion, Doja Cat, Miley Cyrus and Jack Harlow. The Montero album seems to include a total of 15 tracks, which is just enough to satisfy our hunger for more Lil Nas X music.
01 Montero (Call Me by Your Name)
02 Dead Right Now
03 Industry Baby [ft. Jack Harlow]
04 That’s What I Want
05 The Art of Realization
06 Scoop [ft. Doja Cat]
07 One of Me [ft. Elton John]
08 Lost in the Citadel
09 Dolla Sign Slime [ft. Megan Thee Stallion]
10 Tales of Dominica
11 Sun Goes Down
13 Don’t Want It
14 Life After Salem
15 Am I Dreaming [ft. Miley Cyrus]
Watch That's What I Want, below.
— cutzing (@cutzing_) August 31, 2021
Montero album has me wantin to kiss a boy pic.twitter.com/JGl4aqHkKB
— plz☆ (@xplzzzz) September 19, 2021
— MONTERO (@LilNasX) September 19, 2021