Last Thursday, Billboard reported Ocean's 45-minute visual album was heading to major streaming services. The project debuted in 2016 as an Apple Music exclusive, and was later released on CDs and vinyl, as well as DVD and VHS.
Though the outlet couldn't confirm when exactly Endless would hit streaming platforms, sources claimed it would arrive "soon." Naturally, the news sparked excitement among Ocean fans, but the enthusiasm quickly faded this week when the singer called the report "fake news" on an Instagram post of a fan page.
Many people wondered why Ocean would digitally release a track-by-track Endless album nearly two and a half years after the visual's debut. It's also worth noting that some listeners consider Endless a throwaway project—one that was only released to fulfill Ocean's contractual obligations to Def Jam and Universal Music Group.
Just a day after the visual album surfaced on Apple Music, Ocean shared his long-awaited studio album Blonde via his independent label Boys Don't Cry. Anonymous sources told the Associated Press that Def Jam and UMG prematurely ended Ocean's contract due to their tense relationship, which was described as a "bad marriage."
"He didn’t want to be on a label. He wanted to do his own thing," the source explained. "I'm sure there was some kind of negotiation in order for him to get out of the contract if there were remaining commitments on the contract."