“Pills N Potions” (iTunes)
The always vivacious Nicki Minaj is gearing up to release her third studio album The Pink Print much to the delight of barbs everywhere. She gave us the hood animated Nicki via her controversial single “Lookin A**” as well as with the follow up promo single “Yasss Bish.” However, she has recently toned it down a notch for what is shaping up to be the LP’s leading record “Pills N Potions.” The track was produced by Dr. Luke and Cirkut. They were also a part of the songwriting process along with Ester Dean. The tune is a slow piano driven number with elegant supporting musical components and an intoxicating vibe. Nicki plays up both her singing and rapping skills as she croons on the hook and brings her signature sound to the verses. The theme of the selection revolves around retaining love for those who may not necessarily be deserving of it. Or in a simpler term – forgiveness. Nicki nails the topic with lines like: “Hey yo, they could never make me hate you. Even though what you was doing wasn’t tasteful. Even though you out here looking so ungrateful. I’m a keep it moving. Be classy and graceful. I told ’em it’s no friends in the game. You ain’t learn that yet. All the bridges you came over, don’t burn that yet. N—as want respect. But n—as ain’t earn that yet.” Those words slay in the opening portion of the song. Overall, this is an amazing effort. Rumor has it that the track may be inspired by and or dedicated to Nicki’s former hairstylist. The two parted ways on a sour note some time ago.
The video for the single began to make waves when photo stills, clips, and lyric visuals hit the net last month. The official full length piece was unveiled just a couple of days ago. The video was directed by Diane Martel who also happened to do “Right Thru Me,” another softer look for the Cash Money Records vixen. The flick features Nicki in all of her natural glory. So there’s no crazy make up, wild hair, or any other gimmicky details that the Hip-Hop diva has been previously known for. She essentially performs in a collective of different outfits amid a plain grey toned backdrop. Additionally and slightly surprisingly to fans, The Game appears in the visuals as Nicki’s love interest. Despite his typical rough demeanor, he fits in nicely with the mild mannered vision. The video is accented with a wide range of delightfully artistic special effects. Examples of which include: rabbits, potion like smoke, pill symbolism, and so on. The graphics are abstract but do add a strange sense of elegance to the work. All in all, this is a ravishing video.
**My Two Cents: This is how I prefer Nicki to be. Mellowed out and embracing her inherent beauty. She has a lot of talent. There never was or never is need for all of that extra stuff. This is my favorite song/video of hers since she hit the mainstream. I hope she continues on this path. I may just have to cop The Pink Print when it drops. The Game wasn’t looking too shabby here either. Nope, not mad at all. Both the track and the visuals are 100% on point. Go ahead and check ’em out. -MinM