Deen is hot like fire
Awwww snap! It’s my boo, Rochelle Jordan. Lord knows she’s been off duty for long enough. I ain’t front, I love her and I appreciate the loosies she’s tossed out over the last year or so but I was about to start calling her Rochelle Hill. Or Rochelle Neglectronica. Or Rochelle Maxwell. Or Rochelle D’Angelo. It seems as if the good ones are worth waiting for – at least in R&B – I don’t care about Jay Electronica.
That said, ROJO isn’t quite offering us the full monty on this new tape, Killah. It’s essentially an expertly produced, yet casual EP of sorts. We’re over a decade deep on that mixtape shit but it still feels weird to describe an R&B project as a mixtape. Nonetheless, it’s still great to hear new music from Ms. Jordan, especially when she sounds as sultry and confident as she does throughout this tape. It could be my personal bias, but I can’t think of another songstress that sounds so natural, effortless and unbothered even delivering the grittiest lines. That’s a big part of her appeal. The spades of attitude and ease in her delivery, along with her knack for new vocal arrangements seem to allow her to pull off covers and ‘freestyles’ of all sorts throughout this project and she understands the power of brevity – this thing is only 23 minutes long and you just wanna run it back once it ends.
The casual and somewhat scattershot vibe throughout Killahkinda means that ROJO, her long time producer, KLSH and a ‘new’ addition to the gang on the production tip, Machinedrum, get to keep things playful and experimental. I’d list all the random nuggets you’ll run into while listening, but that would be some spoiler type shit. I suppose one effective way to employ your influences is to just embrace them unabashedly. For instance, there’s something I believe to be a brief cover of Aaliyah’s “4 Page Letter” on this muthafucka – it’s beautifully done and I can’t knock the idea, given that Rochelle will always kinda remind me of Aaliyah.
The best thing about the appearance of this mix is that it’s supposed to be the prelude to her album 1021, her first full project since the one I first heard her on back in 2012, ‘Pressure’. So you can essentially consider this a tease before the main course. Based on what I’m hearing on Killah, I think we’re in for a treat in a few weeks. I can’t wait, but this will do in the meantime…