Music fans have been waiting for Chance The Rapper’s first full-length album for the better part of a decade, spurred on by a host of mix-tapes, features, and nigh-relentless, Kit-Kat-adjacent positivity. Finally, The Big Day is actually here, releasing to streaming services just a bit later than originally expected. As noted by Vulture, Chance defied expectations by refusing to release the “owbum”—as he referred to it extensively on social media before finally announcing its formal name—at midnight, instead holding it until noon today in Chicago.
Big Day sees Chance recruit a whole bunch of Chance’s friends from all over the music industry; featured appearances include Nicki Minaj, Justin Vernon, John Legend, DaBaby, Timbaland, Smino, Gucci Mane, Taylor Bennett, Francis And The Lights, Megan Thee Stallion, Shawn Mendes, and—of all people—Death Cab For Cutie, with Ben Gibbard’s distinctive vocals breaking through on “Do You Remember,” which Chance debuted at a concert in Chicago last night.
As usual, Chance released the album on his own, operating independently of a label. And while the pressure is obviously on to see if he can fulfill years of promises and ambitions, he’s also described the whole thing as an expression of joy: “The whole album has been inspired by the day that I got married and how I was dancing that day,” he told an interviewer when discussing the album a few months back.