One way to know you've made it: You post three cryptic images on Instagram, and dozens of breathless blogs follow. "You" in this case is Kendrick Lamar, who quickly prompted a round of frenzied speculation on Thursday after dropping hints about pgLang, a new company he founded in tandem with former Top Dog co-president Dave Free.
The pgLang website is cryptic. There's a redacted mission statement that alludes to the creation of a multilingual community and concludes with "we are creators." There's also a visual mission statement, which features Baby Keem in existential crisis, plus appearances by Yara Shahidi, Mr. Lamar himself, Jorja Smith, and two people with enormous eyeball masks punching each other in the eyeball-face. Lastly, there's music: A brief intro from Kendrick Lamar transitions to bars from Baby Keem, and roughly a minute later, the video transitions back to an eclectic collection of images.
Is a new Kendrick album on the way? Who knows. It's been two years since the Black Panther soundtrack, and almost three years since DAMN, so a musical project in the near future—one that's tied to the publicity pgLang is garnering—doesn't seem out of the realm of possibility. But pgLang does appear to have grander goals, as their press release, condensed below, makes clear.
"Created by Kendrick Lamar and Dave Free, [pgLang] is a new multi-lingual, at service company. It is not a 'record label', a 'movie studio', or a 'publishing house'... This is happening now because the media landscape is rapidly changing, empowering audiences with choices like never before. Only a few contemporary creators have figured out how to speak the evolving language of this generation without fading into the white noise or pre-assigned market share. pgLang is designed to be artist-friendly above all else and embrace both quality and unconventional concepts... Baby Keem, artist one partnering with pgLang, says, 'Astronaut ideas. That is what I call the shit that I know I want but that stand alone. You know? Like, not everything has to ‘make sense’ to me in a rational way. This is how my mind stays fresh, by letting myself have my astronaut ideas and developing them even though it might confuse anyone else.'"
If you too have astronaut ideas, fear not: The pgLang website has merch for sale.
Originally Appeared on GQ