This is the Lil’ Kim we’ve been patiently waiting for, and quite frankly, I’m geeking.
2005 marks the last time Lil’ Kim rolled out an official, full-length album (The Naked Truth). That all changes with “Took Us A Break”, the first taste of Lil’ Kim’s upcoming fifth studio album. The accompanying black and white video is dark, menacing, and captivating.
The Queen Bee takes double duty on “Took Us A Break”, delivering seething verses and a very 2010’s auto-tuned hook. The hook is particularly interesting, because below the auto-tuned vocals, Kim takes her voice so deep she might be mistaken for a man. It reminds me of listening to Sade’s “Soldier of Love” for the first time. Sade’s voice was so low, it was jarring and momentarily unrecognizable, yet utterly mesmerizing. Kim achieves the same thing on “Took Us A Break'”s hook.
Furthermore, that deep voice is retro Kim, dating all the way back to the Junior M.A.F.I.A. days: Deep, dark, and hungry. It’s magnanimous to see Kim blend her early days with 2017 mumble rap like a true chameleon.
Lyrically Kim is sharp as ever. She drops quotables like “bomb pussy, that’s a boom box” (can I get that on a shirt in emoji form please? It would look like this:?? , followed by the ? below it) and “Rolls Royce is my taxi”. As always, she’s name dropping brands like Gucci, Givenchy, and Buscemi to make it crystal clear that she is still the Queen Bitch. In her second verse, she sends out a reminder that she “was raised in the school of hard knocks”. Then, she aims her pen at haters & imitators “these bitches is class clowns. Givin’ y’all my old clothes, old flows, like hand-me-down’s.”
It’s crystal clear that the Queen Bee is finally back.