Frank Ocean has insisted that his album 'Channel Orange' was released early on iTunes in order to prevent the record from leaking online. In a similar move used by Jay Z and Kanye West for their 'Watch the Throne' album - which Ocean appeared on - 'Channel Orange' hit iTunes this week, 7 days ahead of its physical release.
Some speculation has suggested Ocean and his record label had fast-tracked the album in order to capitalize on the huge media attention surrounding the Odd Future affiliate and his sexuality, however, in a phone interview with Zane Lowe on Thursday (July 12, 2012), the singer explained, "It was actually the plan all along.I kinda wanted to mirror what ... Jay and Kanye did with Watch the Throne, preventing the leak by staggering digital and physical dates". The superstar duo released their joint disc exclusively on iTunes three days before it hit shelves. Though 'Channel Orange' has shot to the top of the digital chart, not everybody is happy about the early release, most notably, 'Target'. The major retailer is boycotting the album, though the New Orleans native is still on-course for the No.2 spot. He went into a little more depth about the precautions he took to stop the leak, saying, "I haven't even held one in my hands.I'm actually still designing the package for vinyl. The physical [CDs] are done, but when we sent them in, they were locked down at the manufacturer. They haven't left. They never went on trucks [to retailers] because that's where things leak".
After a heady week, which has seen him come out over his sexuality, play live on Jimmy Fallon's show, and win a new wave of fans, everything seems to be falling into place for Frank Ocean - with or without Target.