Single Review: Beyoncé – Formation

Beyonce Formation

Beyoncé’s new single is quite the statement
Beyoncé is scheduled to perform during the Super Bowl halftime show together with Coldplay and rumors started to go around that she would premiere a new song. She confirmed this by actually putting a new single, complete with a video, on Tidal. It is the first new material we hear since November 2014, when The Platinum Edition of her surprise released self titled album was released. ‘Formation’ makes clear that Beyoncé won’t go back to predictable radio pop anytime soon. The song has a strong hip hop beat and together with the lyrics and video, Queen Bey makes quite the statement.

Bey wrote the track together with Rae Sremmurd’s Swae Lee and it was produced by Mike Will Made It. What we get from the track is a whole lot of attitude, based on thick beats and delivered in powerful chants. The easily quotable lyrics are all about celebrating Beyoncé’s roots and it is her way of shutting up the ‘haters’ and press who spread rumors about her. “My daddy Alabama, Momma Louisiana, You mix that negro with that Creole, make a Texas bamma. I like my baby hair, with baby hair and afros. I like my negro nose with Jackson Five nostrils. Earned all this money but they never take the country out me, I got hot sauce in my bag, swag!”, she confidently states and you just have to believe her. She throws a quite sexual verse in our faces as well and repeats often how she is ‘slaying’. This is all packed in a tune that does not have an easily recognizable chorus or a powerful hook, but still it works for this message and she will definitely be the talk of the town for days to come.

The strength of the statement also has a lot to do with the video that accompanies the tune, directed by Beyoncé in collaboration with Melina Matsoukas. We get to see a lot of different sets and outfits, but they are all striking images. Beyoncé sells the hell out of the tune and the video actually ends with the words ‘stop shooting us’ on a wall and then she sinks under water sitting on a police car. That is how you do a song and video with social commentary, ladies and gentlemen.

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