Looks like we've got one album to cross off our Most Anticipated Albums of 2012 list: according to rapper Andre 3000, we're not going to be seeing a new Outkast project before the end of the year - if ever.
Fans have been clamoring for a reunion between Big Boi and Andre, which would usher in a new era for Outkast. We've heard snippets of hopeful news and rumors over the years, but nothing has come to fruition. And now, during an interview with GQ.com, Andre has officially shot down the speculation.
“There's been a lot of talk on the Internet about an Outkast album and I have to say that as of now, there are no plans for another Outkast album,” Andre said. “There's a lot of music on the horizon. I've been living off the excitement of new artists. I've been privileged to have these new artists kind of reach out and grab back and say, ‘Hey, Andre, we want you on this song.’ So
I've been taking those calls and for the last two years, I've been doing collaborations. So these new artists have kind of been keeping me alive. I've just really been feeding off of that and this year I think I'm planning to do a solo project. I don't know when it will come out, but hopefully it'll come out this year. As far as Outkast, I really don't know if or when that will happen.”
The dismissal counters the latest round of rumors that had the group reportedly heading to Epic Records for a new LP. Three Stacks did confirm that another solo album is on the way, and that it will take his sound back to the high-octane energy excess of early Outkast music.
“The only thing I can really say is I'm going to get back to having fun because that's what it was all about when I started this in high school—with Outkast—those were like high school dreams. I'm 36 now, so I have grown-man dreams. This album will just be me being myself as normal.”
Ultimately, it seems as if the artistic direction between Bi Boi and Andre has evolved to a point of incongruence. With the legacy of Outkast weighing heavily on any possible collaboration between the two, it's an understandable decision for the duo to leave well enough alone and continue with their solo endeavors. But for the fans, there's always the spark of hope that they'll catch the reunion fever that's been making the rounds these past few years.