Frontline by Kelela
Kelela burst on to the scene in 2013 with her mixtape project Cut 4 Me but it was 2015 and 2016 that really solidified as one of the strongest R&B talents, her decisive vocals and slick 90s arrangements reminiscent of Aaliyah, Brandy and others. Hallucinogen remains one of the best examples of how powerful an EP can be, telling the story of a breakup in reverse, she manages to plumb the emotional depths of a loss in provocative ways.
It's no surprise that the pressure was mounting for Kelela to finally release her debut album. After announcing the first single "LMK," which some panned as being a bit too commercial, she's released her second single, "Frontline," the opener from her forthcoming album Take Me Apart. This track is a much longer effort: hazy, defiant, featuring a truly memorable syncopated chorus where she remarks, "Cry and talk about it, baby, but it ain't no use / I ain't gonna sit here with your rules." In interviews, she's talked about the album being a celebration of Black womanhood in the US, and "Frontline" coupled with "LMK" show she's living her truth through her music.