No matter what boundary you box her in – country, gender or otherwise – Little Simz continues to evolve her GOAT status on surprise EP, Drop 7

A decade since her debut and the first instalment of her EP series, the British-Nigerian artist has fervently established herself as a confident live performer, technical wordsmith, and an inspiring and thought-provoking leader among the African diaspora. 

The critical acclaim and international success of Little Simz truly began to bubble with her soulful and grandiose fourth studio album, Sometimes I Might Be Introvert. One of the finest projects in the last five years, the London-born rapper entered the 2020s with an album of similar calibre to some of Kendrick Lamar and Lauryn Hill’s best work. 

That would be enough to warrant a hiatus for most artists. But Little Simz is not like most artists. She struck back in 2022 with the 10-track collection NO THANK YOU, thematically focusing on her frustrations with the music business and its adverse impact on mental health. 

A far more solo endeavour than her previous offerings, the biggest highlight came in the form of ‘Gorilla’. A casual and self-assured anthem, the track was later accompanied with the best music video of last year, courtesy of director Dave Meyers whose resume includes names like Travis Scott, SZA, Ed Sheeran, and more. 

Released via Forever Living Original, Drop 7 arrives four years after its predecessor and only a week after Simz won Best Hip-Hop Act at the MOBOs. The seven-track EP was completed across three days, with the 29-year-old artist locking in with longtime collaborator and producer Jakwob for its creation.

Drop 7 marks Simz’ biggest departure from previous sonics, as she takes on the most experimental and club-orientated beats of her career. Pressing play on the EP is like taking your first step into probably the best warehouse party of your life. Pairing flawlessly with her lethal flow, Simz’ immerses herself in dark and futuristic dance production that utilises elements of house, Afro-pop, Baile funk and Jersey club music.

Despite its short runtime, Drop 7 is a satisfying listen that leaves a lasting impression and points towards an exciting progression in Little Simz’ career. Not only expanding her soundscape with cross-cultural influences, the EP finds Simz’ pushing herself into new flows and cadences. Looking around at the landscape of UK music, and the recent successes of acts like Fred Again…, Nia Archives, and even Skepta on his new song ‘Gas Me Up (Diligent)’, Drop 7 fits right in while still distinctly setting itself apart like Little Simz always does.

Perhaps not on the same pedigree or as flesh out as her last full-length projects, the latest offering allows listeners to hear Little Simz’ creative evolution in real time and gain an insight into where the Mercury Prize winner is headed next. With much more planned in the coming months (what exactly remains to be seen), Drop 7 should hold you over till the next time Little Simz proves she’s one of the best.

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