To answer the proverbial question “WTF is in Wyoming?” apparently, Kanye West is. And because he appears to be at work on a new album there (in Jackson Hole, to be precise), hip-hop fans are frantically checking for their favorite rapper’s locations, seeing if the “Equality State” turns up.
(Sidenote: Yes, that is Wyoming’s state nickname; they gave women the right to vote in their state constitution, plus something on water rights. No, I didn’t know that before Google.)
Anyway, TMZ first reported that West was recording his album in Wyoming in 2017, but as Pitchfork now notes (and a recent E! News article claims), he seems to have returned, and rumors are swirling about who is out there and may be working on West’s newest project.
Chief among them is Travis Scott, who posted a photo on Instagram of himself in a snowy, Wyoming-esque landscape with the caption, “Astroturf.” Substantiating that rumor was the fact that his manager, David Stromberg, posted a photo from Wyoming.
Rapper King Louie and singer-songwriter the Dream also posted a picture of themselves at the Jackson Hole airport, which looks to be about the size of an Arby’s.
The World Famous Tony Williams, a soul singer and first cousin to West who has dropped vocals on West’s albums since The College Dropout, also recently posted from the ski-resort town. And as E! News reports, even Kim Kardashian has swung through Jackson Hole to visit her hubby. In that article from Monday, a source claimed that West had been working on his album for the past week.
West employed a similar process—in Hawaii—for 2010’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. While working on the album, West spent a year in a studio compound and flew out collaborators like Nicki Minaj and RZA to work on tracks.
So is this all a mass hip-hop ski vacation? Or is Wyoming Kanye’s new Hawaii? Is West working on a Man in the Snow album, à la Justin Timberlake (God, I hope not)? Does the mountain West bring out Kanye’s best? And did he ever get his damn croissants? I guess we’ll find out for sure when the album drops.