Last week, Janelle Monáe finally announced that her first new album in five years would be called Dirty Computer and that it’d be coming out this year. And today, she’s shared two songs from it — “Make Me Feel” and “Django Jane” — alongside videos, which were respectively directed by Alan Ferguson and Andrew Donoho & Chuck Lightning. The former features actress Tessa Thompson. The videos are part of a larger narrative film, which is being called an “Emotion Picture.”
In an interview with Beats 1’s Zane Lowe, Monáe talked a little bit about the project as a whole:
You know I always knew that I had to make this album. I actually had this title on this concept before my first album The ArchAndriod and it scared me because a lot of the things that I knew that I needed to say were very deep, very personal, from the heart. You know this is an extremely vulnerable album and it took me a while to make it because I’m a self editor. I self edit myself a lot. I’m like I don’t want to talk about this, I don’t want to talk about that. I had to kind of have people at Wonderland on my team to hold me accountable to it. They were like OK, you said you wanted to make this album before your first album, this is the opportunity for you to just really choose honesty over mystery. I know that there are a lot of things that I haven’t discussed and I think this is the album that you’ll get an opportunity to get a closer glimpse into my mind and into my heart.
She also said that she worked with a number of outside collaborators on the album, including Julia Michaels and Chuck Lightning. “Make Me Feel” is a Michaels co-write.
Watch the videos for the new Monáe tracks below.
Dirty Computer is out 4/27.