Single Review: “***Flawless” Remix by Beyoncé and Nicki Minaj

At the stroke of midnight on Sunday, Beyoncé dropped the official remix of “***Flawless” featuring a guest verse from Nicki Minaj, shocking the world.  It was shocking not only because she collaborated with Nicki for the first time but also because she added new verses of her own to the song.

In the first new verse, King B dropped some pretty shocking lines, but the most shocking is, of course, this one:

“Of course sometimes shit goes down when it’s a billion dollars on an elevator.”

Essentially, B is just saying “shit happens,” but in true hip-hop fashion she laces it with arrogance to say it in the most controversial and clever way possible.  Immediately following this verse is a bit from the original “***Flawless,” where Beyoncé sings, “my sister told me I should speak my mind, my man makes me feel so god damn fine – I’m flawless!”  By reiterating this line from the song (which was released before “the incident”) Beyoncé is, in her own way, reaffirming that everything’s fine with her sister and her husband.

While “***Flawless” is cocky (and a tad bit ratchet), and may on the surface appear to be just for fun, there is actually a more meaningful message behind the song: to embrace your imperfections.  This is a constant theme on the BEYONCÉ album.  By following up the lines about the elevator incident with her mentioning Solange and Jay, and then asserting, “I’m flawless!,”  she is saying that while everything isn’t perfect, while her life may be flawed, it’s okay because she still feels flawless.  Beyoncé didn’t get to the position she is in today by dwelling on negative energy and feeling self-pity.  She got there by being positive and striving through the adversity; by being a survivor.

As for Nicki, in her verse she says “he wants Monster Nicki in Sri Lanka” in reference to her verse on Kanye West’s “Monster,” which many have lauded as her best verse and lyrical peak.  She seems to acknowledge that people want to hear that Nicki again.  It’s best to listen and decide for yourself, but her verse on the “***Flawless” remix is indeed close to flawless, and may even be her best since “Monster.”  It even incited Lil’ Kim to go up in arms and add her own verse to the track.  Kim is upset that Nicki proclaimed herself to be the “Queen of Rap” as if she hasn’t done it before.  Of course, Nicki knew exactly what she was doing with that line, and the hit dog sure did holler.

Overall, the remix did its job and brought some major attention to Beyoncé and what seems to be the next single from BEYONCÉ, “***Flawless.”  The campaign so far has been quite unorthodox (for whatever reason, the remix hasn’t been sent to iTunes) and there has yet to be any formal announcement of “***Flawless” even being an actual single.  The video isn’t on VEVO (one must wonder, will there be a remix video?) and there is no radio add date, though at this point it probably doesn’t even need one.  Beyoncé has yet to seem to give any sorts of fucks about having a traditional, chart-defined “hit single” this era, so why start now?

 

Grade:

90/97

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