We now know the reason we had to wait 17 years—since OutKast's Idlewild in 2006—for the genius that is André 3000 to be part of a full-length recording project: The lyrical-miracle maker was busy writing out song titles.
Three Stacks' first proper solo LP, New Blue Sun (Epic), features eight creatively, elaborately named tracks, stretching up to 25 words in length. In case this is somehow the first time you're hearing of the surprise album that was announced on Tuesday, don't hold your breath for Dré's esoteric rhymes. This album is completely instrumental, with Big Boi's former-partner-in-rhyme showing off his flair on the flute.
That's right: The only words you'll find on this thing are in the liner notes and, of course, the tracklist. Here, we rank all of the songs—based on titles alone. No listening required. What's in a name, anyway?
8. “I swear, I Really Wanted to Make a “Rap” Album But This Is Literally the Way the Wind Blew Me This Time”
Hey, I like when the wedding DJ spins "Hey Ya!" at 12:50 a.m. and the bridesmaids are losing it just as much as the next guy. But this title reads like a harbinger of doom. André is a fine singer. He is an elite rapper who crushes every cameo that comes his way. Screw the wind. The world really wanted him to make a rap album.
7. “Ghandi, Dalai Lama, Your Lord & Savior J.C. / Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, and John Wayne Gacy”
Hmm... this has angel on one shoulder, devil on the other vibes. Or perhaps our host is dreaming up the ultimate pacifist-versus-psychopath tag-team cage match. Either way, it loses point for the failure to hit that spell check.
6. “The Slang Word P(*)ssy Rolls Off the Tongue With Far Better Ease Than the Proper Word Vagina. Do You Agree?”
Yes, we do agree. But we also had a traumatic experience when Mom went through our closet and discovered our 2 Live Crew and N.W.A cassettes. That did not go over so well. So, let's stick to scientific terms on album jackets, shall we?
5. “BuyPoloDisorder’s Daughter Wears A 3000™ Button Down Embroidered”
If you're not cross-branding and collabing and trademarking your fashion sense in 2023, then you're simply not doing it right.
4. “Dreams Once Buried Beneath The Dungeon Floor Slowly Sprout Into Undying Gardens”
Word is, Tupac's estate is suing this title for copyright infringing on The Rose That Grew from Concrete. (Also: Anyone else spot the word "Dungeon" and immediately start fantasizing about a Family reunion?)
3. “Ants to You, Gods to Who?”
This one's a thinker. Sounds ambitious. Or maybe André got distracted during meditation one day, thinking about that six-week span in 1998 when DreamWorks' Antz and Pixar's A Bug's Life waged an epic box-office war for children's attention spans.
2. “That Night in Hawaii When I Turned Into a Panther and Started Making These Low Register Purring Tones That I Couldn’t Control … Sh¥t Was Wild”
OK, it's becoming clearly apparent that this project is less musical journey and more ayahuasca trip ventilated through a Mayan flute and dressed in striped overalls. We're here for the weirdness. Let it purr. Keep your heart, Three Stacks.
1. "Ninety Three ‘Til Infinity and Beyoncé”
Rejected title: "Knock 'Em Out the Boxer Brief and the Pointer Sistershood of the Traveling Pants Optional."