Lil Kim Season is upon us, with Lil’ Kim’s latest mixtape being released to the masses. It marks the Queens Bee’s first mixtape release in two years since her last project, Hard Core 2K14.
The rapper’s latest mixtape comes after a mild hiatus which in an interview with Billboard, she puts down to wanting to spend more time with her daughter, Royal Reign. “For a long time, my focus was my baby, I wasn’t thinking about music at all.” She reflects, “now that she’s 19 months and she’s going to be two this summer, she’s motivating me to do music again.”
The ten track mixtape features the Brooklyn native rapping freestyles over Drake’s Summer Sixteen, as well as Rihanna’s Work, which are both pretty dope. Her work on the Drake track is especially impressive, which is not too surprising since Lil’ Kim has mentioned that she’d be down for a collaboration with him when pressed about it in the Billboard interview, saying that she “would love to” collaborate with Drake, regardless of their past differences, but if it doesn’t work out “it is what it is.”
The stand out on the mixtape is I Did It For Brooklyn, which along with Queen Bee, features another Brooklyn native, Maino, who’s best known for his platinum track with T-Pain, All the Above. The Brooklyn rappers run some clever verses, showing off their lyrical range on a song which is an accolade to their home borough.
Perhaps the most disappointing aspect of the mixtape is the inclusion of the previously released single, Mine, which features Kevin Gates. Our displeasure for the song has already been documented, and it is taking up space in this mixtape’s track list. It ends up being an unwelcome reminder of the many misses which plague Lil’ Kim instead of her multiple hits.
All in all, the tape is worth a listen, especially if you’re a fan of the most pint sized member of the Puff Daddy family. With her last album hitting us way back in 2005, it’ll be interesting to see if the success of her latest mixtape will reignite fans interest in hearing more from Lil’ Kim, and whether or not that spark will prompt the rapper to keep bringing the heat for her next studio album.