New Music: Eminem, “Walk on Water,” Miguel, “Told You So,” N.E.R.D., “Lemon” and more

walk on water

My music heads know the score – when the weather turns and leaves begin to fall, best believe your favorite high-profile artists will return from hibernation to drop new music.

Those Christmas gifts aren’t gonna pay for themselves, you know.

We’ve had a bunch of notable new releases over the past week or so. Let’s talk about whether they’re any good.

Miguel, “Told You So”

A lot of Miguel fans are begging – downright PLEADING – for him to return to the sound he employed on his 2012 sophomore album. But nope, you ain’t getting that, you’re getting beats that sound lifted from a discounted NES game. However, Miguel’s vocals still sound great over the bizarre production. It’s a fun, innovative atmosphere. I dig it.

Rating: Thumbs up

Alicia Keys, “When You Were Gone”

In recognition of the 10-year anniversary of Alicia’s As I Am album, she recently shared this unreleased cut from those studio sessions. And it’s a pretty good one – definitely worthy of inclusion on that album. It’s not a blockbuster or anything, but it’s a catchy, inviting midtempo groove.

Rating: Thumbs up

Ashanti featuring Ty Dolla Sign, “Say Less”

Hey, it’s a new Ashanti song, so you know my man Kyle from is gonna have to change his draws 20 seconds into it. This one’s produced by DJ Mustard, so you already know what to expect – a bouncy beat with hip-hop inspired lyrical arrangements. And that’s the problem, we’ve heard this type of track TIME AND TIME AGAIN. Even though it’s a retread, it’s new ground for Ashanti. Eh, Kyle will love it, at least.

Rating: Thumbs in the middle

Remy Ma featuring Lil Kim, “Wake Me Up”

I’m a big fan of Remy’s gruff delivery and hearing her bust shots over Kim’s “Queen Bee” instrumental is a guaranteed win. But there’s something that feels a bit stale with this one. Maybe it’s the constant shots at Nicki Minaj – mean, she’s beating dead horse hair at this point. This is a pretty forgettable outing overall.

Rating: Thumbs in the middle

Lil Kim, “Took Us A Break”

…And then we have this. Kim has had a billion comeback songs over the past decade, and now it’s time to add Irritating Mumble Rap to her list. Truthfully, the actual verses aren’t too bad but the hook is literally incomprehensible. I love Kim. I don’t love this. At all.

Rating: Thumbs down

N.E.R.D. featuring Rihanna, “Lemon”

Zesty! The first NERD track in seven years comes as a bit of a surprise, but this energetic number is exactly what NERD fans have been craving. The throwback hip-hop vibe speaks to my soul and while y’all know I’m FAR from a Rihanna fan, Rapper Rihanna has always been the most tolerable incarnation of Rih Rih. Bring on the new album.

Rating: Thumbs up

Eminem featuring Beyonce, “Walk on Water”

Em knows what he’s doing – drop a song with Beyonce, Internet goes insane. This track us destined to be divisive. The soft production and Bey’s hook nearly make this a pop ballad, and introspective Eminem has always been a tough sell to some fans. So yeah, this track doesn’t sound like Psychopathic 1999 Em but check this news flash – it ain’t 1999 anymore. Em’s revealing, tightly crafted bars drive home the story of his professional insecurities and Bey’s contribution is a surprisingly good fit. Fans who checked out on Marshall post-Eminem Show won’t be moved, but there’s enough intrigue here for me to look forward to his new album.

Rating: Thumbs up

What do y’all think of these new releases? Let us know in the comments below.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.