Elissa: I've postponed my new album to cheer along the World Cup with fans

The Lebanese pop star was due to release her untitled record this summer

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Expect a new album from Elissa after the Fifa World Cup Qatar 2022.

The Lebanese pop star revealed she is delaying the release as she knows eyes, and ears, will be focused elsewhere during the football tournament, including her own.

Scroll through the gallery above to see Elissa's fashion evolution

“I wanted to release the new album during the summer but now I postponed it to after the World Cup because, as you know, people's attention will be focused on the tournament,” she told Sky News Arabia.

“Even myself, I am looking forward to it and will be following.”

She made the comment in a TV interview on Wednesday, following a sold-out concert in Istanbul, Turkey.

“It was lovely to be on stage and really feel the love and to see the Arabic community here in Istanbul,” she said. “People came from Dubai, Palestine, Iraq and even from Iran. It was very special."

The Betmoun singer confirmed the album is finished.

However, the new release date has not been announced, though the month-long tournament kicks off in Qatar on November 20.

Hype surrounding the untitled project has been further heightened with the release of new single Ana W Bass (Mine Only) on Wednesday.

The tender ballad is one of the more romantic songs in Elissa's catalogue as she addresses a partner to "stay close to me, hold me. I need you, I love you".

The accompanying music video is equally intimate.

Shot on eight-millimetre film, it is full of sepia footage of the singer strolling on the beach and around the house while she gazes lovingly at the camera.

“The video is more simple and playful. It is something different. It’s not really a music video because I am not there performing or lip syncing the song,” she said.

The album will also feature three songs by renowned Lebanese composer and singer Marwan Khoury.

“I love him and he is one of my favourite lyricists and songwriters, as well as the fact that he is also a great solo artist in his own right,” Elissa said.

News of the upcoming album marks a significant about-turn for Elissa, who previously stated 2020's Sahbit Raey (Opinion Giver) would be her last, blaming the creative constraints placed upon her by a regional music industry she described as a "mafia".

The comments were made on the back of Elissa criticising previous label Rotana Records for their 2018 distribution deal with online streaming service Deezer.

Under the agreement, a majority of Elissa's music catalogue was removed from rival sites Spotify and Apple Music and made available exclusively on Deezer.

Now an independent artist, Elissa produces and releases her work through her own company E Records. Despite the changes, she says relations with the Rotana Records remain cordial.

"I still have love for the people at Rotana," she said. "I still have a great relationship with them and I work with them when it comes to concert performances."

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Updated: August 17, 2022, 12:38 PM
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