It's been a long time, but Missy Elliot has finally made her way back to the limelight with a new single, "WTF (Where They From)". Produced by Pharrell Williams, the single serves as her reintroduction to music after a full decade away. So many have been waiting for this moment and now, with it finally being here, once can only ask, it is too late?
I expected that I would hear mixed reviews of "WTF (Where They From)”. You have some fans who absolutely love the tune, while others aren’t so convinced that this is it for Elliott. I don’t believe in any way that the intention of those who dislike the track to diminish the legacy that Elliott has built and maintained over 20 years. She has undoubtedly put in her work time and time again, but the expectations are naturally high for her return. While I personally like what I’m hearing, I’ll also say that I don’t believe it supersedes the expectations. Fans are used to her coming at a certain level, and she has always seemingly worked harder than most to outdo her previous work. In some ways, I feel the sound is a little dated.
Pharrell, while a musical genius as both an artist and producer, is not the one to spearhead her return to the top in my mind. For me, Timbaland should be at the forefront of her long-awaited return. I, personally, would have expected that he would be riding the lead single with her. In the end, though, it’s really all about preference. For me, being a big fan of their work and knowing the magic they make together, my expectation lied with him catapulting her lead single to the top.
In this industry, there's so much that goes into launching and running a successful campaign as an artist, and her work on this campaign for her new album will prove whether she has what it takes to maintain in today's climate. You can’t help but face the harsh reality that ten years of downtime is indeed a long time. Taking so much time away is a setback that many artists can’t overcome, so Elliott surely has a lot of work ahead of her. Many of today's youth, who are truly the ones buying music, don't know a great deal about Elliott if they weren’t privy to any of her previous work. Of course, she did guest on tracks for a few artists, including Fantasia, Ciara, and J. Cole, but time will tell if that was enough to keep her afloat.
Nevertheless, Missy is a musical genius, and it’s great to see her back. The track highlights the high energy we’ve come to love Missy Elliott for over the years, and the accompanying video treatment will definitely have you moving. As a long-time fan, I convinced that there are many great things to come from her upcoming album. It’s been a long time coming, and like her other die hards, I’m eager to hear what she’s got in store.