It turns out that Rihanna's fans aren't the only ones wondering where the singer's long-awaited ninth album is. While unveiling Fenty's newest line of sunglasses on Instagram on May 12, Rihanna joked that she "lost" her "R9" album after fans questioned her about a possible release date in the comments. The singer has been notoriously tight-lipped about releasing new music in the four years since she dropped her critically-acclaimed eighth studio album, ANTI, much to the chagrin of her fan base.
"WHERES THE ALBUM?" a fan commented on Rihanna's most recent Instagram post, which has since amassed over 3,600 likes. "I lost it," Rihanna responded jokingly. Shortly afterward, another fan told the singer and makeup mogul "DON'T DROP DAT ALBUM," in the comments, to which she fired back, "Navy this who to blame right here look."
Of course, the Rihanna Navy aren't the only people who are desperate for her to release music as soon as possible; during a recent interview with Apple Music's Beats 1 DJ Zane Lowe, Ariana Grande revealed she wants new Rihanna music just as much as the rest of the world. "I get it, I appreciate it, and I'm really glad that she's putting in so much effort," Grande said of (impatiently) waiting for new music. "It means a lot. But I also, really, I listen to Anti every day. Like, I think it's time. I need it. Sorry, she's gonna, like, hate me for saying that but I want it so bad."
"Can you just post it and then just leave and then go back to work?" Grande continued, imaginarily pleading to Rihanna. "And I'm buying the undies. I'm buying the makeup. I'm streaming ANTI. I'm streaming Unapologetic. I'm streaming Loud. Every day, I really am." Still, the "Stuck With U" singer also joked that she was something of a hypocrite by hounding Rihanna about the album. "I'm so angry because I hate when people say this to me," she said, "but now that I'm saying it to her, it's fine."
Luckily for both Grande and the Navy, Rihanna told Vogue U.K. in April that she is working on new music at the moment. "I can’t say when I’m going to drop," she told the outlet. "But I am very aggressively working on music." Rihanna also added that she wants her upcoming record to have a different feel than any of her previous releases. "I don’t want my albums to feel like themes," she explained. "There are no rules. There’s no format. There’s just good music, and if I feel it, I’m putting it out."
Rihanna also referenced the rumors that her new music will be reggae-inspired, though she clarified that it won't be a traditional reggae album. “I feel like I have no boundaries," she said. "I’ve done everything – I’ve done all the hits, I’ve tried every genre – now I’m just, I’m wide open. I can make anything that I want."
Of course, that doesn't mean that fans should expect Rihanna to stop joking around about when she plans to actually release this new, boundary-pushing record. "To be continued," she told Entertainment Tonight in February when asked about the status of R9. "I like to antagonize my fans a little bit. Well, they antagonize me, too! So, they get it right back." Maybe with Grande on her case as well, Rihanna might decide to finally give the Navy what they want and drop that album.