Ella Mai delivers the “Sauce” on her self-titled debut.
Ella Mai’s significance to DJ Mustard is endearing, but I’m not entirely sold his signature bounce is a good step in terms of her longevity. But for now at least, let us bask in the fact that an r&b-pop hybrid in the mold of Chris Brown, is being bred from a small test tube. The energy of her breakout single “Boo’d Up” was galvanized on her debut after a year-long stalemate, much to the delight of her fans.
On “Sauce,” we find Ella at an advanced stage of her emotional burnout. The lead member of the pit crew signals her in for a tire-change, and Ella complies, but not before digging into her run-flats in rear wheel drive. Gone is the sentimental side she displayed on “Boo’d Up.” The song’s spoken word outro performed by hers truly admits as much. “Lust,” she contends, is a four-letter word much like love “but less precious — more like electric veins running fast than frenzy my heart,” making her crave the ill-seeds of the World. — HOT NEW HIP-HOP