Release date: March 2011
Lasers is the upcoming third studio album by American rapper Lupe Fiasco, released on March 8, 2011.
Fiasco was originally going to release his triple album, "LupE.N.D." as his third and final record, but his contract with Atlantic Records prevented him from continuing with this agenda. He then postponed "LupE.N.D." indefinitely and intended on releasing an album tentatively titled "The Great American Rap Album" in June 2009. Instead, the album was also postponed and he announced a new album was in the works, originally titled "We Are Lasers" and then changed to "Lasers". "Lasers" is a backronym for "Love Always Shines Everytime , Remember 2 Smile". In 2010, to promote the message of the album, Fiasco released a viral video onto the internet titled "The L.A.S.E.R.S. Manifesto", which can be found on both YouTube and the official website. The manifesto reads: "To every man, woman, and child: We want an end to the glamorization of negativity in the media. We want an end to status symbols dictating our worth as individuals. We want a meaning and universal education system. We want not compromise who we are to be accepted by the crowd. We want the invisible walls that separate by wealth, race and class to be torn down. We want to think our own thoughts. We will be responsible for our environment. We want clarity and truth from our elected officials or they should move aside… We will not lose because we are not losers, we are lasers… Lasers are revolutionary. Lasers are the future."
In a 2011 interview with MTV UK, Fiasco said that the album "doesn't have a storyline, whereas The Cool was a concept album and this is more just a collection of songs that share some of the same tones, which is basically just positivity and consciousness. Some of the records are controversial, but it's less cohesive than The Cool." Talking about the album with Details, Fiasco has stated that he wanted to make "a popular record [...] but by my definition of popular [...] an uprising of the people". He has also stated that the creation of the album was "a very painful, dark, fucked-up process."
In a February 2011 interview with Complex, Fiasco has stated: "One thing I try to stress about this project is, I love and hate this album. I listen to it and I'll like some of the songs. But when I think about what it took to actually get the record together and everything that I went through on this record — which is something I can't separate — I hate this album. A lot of the songs that are on the album, I'm kinda neutral to. Not that I don't like them, or that I hate them, it's just I know the process that went behind it. I know the sneaky business deal that went down behind this song, or the artist or singer or songwriter who wrote this hook and didn't want to give me this song in the first place. So when I have that kind of knowledge behind it, I'm just kind of neutral to it like, 'Another day, another dollar.' As opposed something like The Cool, which is more of my own blood, sweat, and tears, and my own control. With this record, I'm little bit more neutral as to the love for the record.
I don't like the process behind Lasers. The music is dope but I just don't like the process. We were literally at the point where all this music was done except for a couple songs that we did after the protest. So the bulk of the album was done. And we were talking about shelving the album and going to another label, that's where we were like, 'If you put the record out, put it out. Either move on to another album or can it and we'll do other records at another label.' The business of it got solved. I'm happy for the fans, this is their album. This is the album that they fought for and that's what made me do songs like 'Words I Never Said' and 'All Black Everything.'"
Speaking about the album with the Chicago Sun-Times, Fiasco has stated: "Lasers is a great album. I'm actually happy with the record. I feel I got to say what I wanted even with -- It doesn't make up for what it took to get through it. It's still being argued and debated upon. [...] The climate of this record was very weird, in some instances surreal. I became very abstract. I had to create this commercial art that appeases the corporate side. I had to acquiesce to certain forces. Hopefully within that I snuck in some things I actually wanted to say any way I can."