From palling around with a newly-elected President Trump to struggling through a mental health crisis, Kanye West had a few very difficult months in the limelight to close out 2016. He’s been near-completely out of the public eye in the time since, deleting his Twitter and Instagram accounts and not making any major news. That is, until now: TMZ is reporting that Yeezy is actually at work on a new album, developing new music on a Wyoming mountaintop retreat where he’s deliberately isolated himself.
From the sound of it, the new album is in the very early stages, which for Kanye could mean years away from completion. A little more than a year ago, he teased the new title of his next album—Turbo Grafx 16—but this is the first significant news of him back at work to come in awhile, and it’s unconfirmed whether this remains his project of focus. (A rumored track list trickled out in December.) Whatever the case, Kanye working on music up, up, and away—away from all the noise and likely in the midst of some heavy soul-searching—is certainly intriguing, if a little surprising. Whether he goes the Bon Iver route or descends from the mountaintop and releases a new album exclusively on stone tablets remains to be seen. At this point, neither would surprise us.