Erykah Badu got us open when she announced the impending arrival of her first-ever mixtape, But You Caint Use My Phone, with her take on Drake's oft-covered "Hotline Bling." Yet, after announcing that the tape would be dropping for the masses last week, the week ended with no new music from Ms. Badu (though, if you follow her, you know that this isn't out of the norm for the singer). But don't fret, she hasn't forsaken us and, in fact, she's offering up a new track from the set to tide us over.
"Phone Down" finds our girl taking a page out of the current landscape of mainstream hip hop, utilizing a minimal, repetitive musical backdrop and adding a few touches of Auto-Tune to her voice. Unscrew your faces, though, as Ms. Badu makes it all work for her. “I can make you put your phone down / As we cruise through the city / I can make you put your phone down / You ain’t gonna text no one when you with me,” she sings, addressing how technology has impeded communication while also boasting about her wiles as hi-hats stutter and ominous piano keys ring. It's a very different sound for Erykah, one that most of her fans will either love or hate. You can decide which camp you'll be in when you check out the track below.
As for her mixtape, Erykah has announced that we can expect But You Caint Use My Phone around Thanksgiving. While we won't exactly hold her to that, we will be ready to give thanks upon its arrival.