SZA fans, we know you’ve been through a lot since the artist’s stunning debut, CTRL, dropped in 2017. Sure, we’ve all been through a lot. But for those of you who witnessed the meteoric rise—and all too sudden vanquishing—of SZA, we are finally here with some good news.
Last month, in an interview with Harlem-based hip-hop informant, entertainer, and talk show host Kerwin Frost, SZA confirmed that her album s coming “soon as f*ck.” We don’t think she would divulge this, and the special guests she has lined up for her sophomore album, unless it was due to arrive in 2020. So yes, fans of the whimsical, dazzling, soulful cool of SZA: Get ready for the highly anticipated follow-up to CTRL, because SZA’s new album will be here soon (as f*ck!).
And, as a Labor Day Weekend surprise, SZA’s first new single has arrived.
“Hit Different,” SZA’s first new single since 2017’s CTRL, features Ty Dolla Sign on the hook. The Neptunes-produced track signals a buff, realized return. With her signature of mixed emotions and a ruminative control that allows her to feel them in the song with us, SZA’s “Hit Different” helps us fast-forward all the time it took us to get here. Because now, finally, we can get excited about her second album. Check out the “Hit Different” music video, which SZA directed herself, below.
“I was into you from the beginning even if you wasn’t mine/ Scared to admit my shortcomings led to overdraft in this affair, declining/ Quicker than we started, evidence we misaligned/ Man, I get more in love with you each argument/ Somethin’ wrong with me, I like the way you screw your face up/ Trigger me right when I need it/ You wrong, but I can’t get along without you/ It’s a shame and I can’t blame myself, keep on lovin’ you/ You do it different,” she sings on the opening verse. Matched with her sultry video—one even Drake donned with appreciation—SZA has delivered an intoxicating return.
In SZA’s Kerwin Frost interview, she confirmed the inclusion of several special guests on her forthcoming LP. BROCKHAMPTON, Justin Timberlake, Post Malone, and Jack Antonoff are all among the list of names she dropped, shedding a superstar light on the sophomore project. Not only has SZA been cooking something up, but from the hit single and guest list alone, we know she’s mastering what could be one of the best hip-hop/soul records of the year.
“Before I was like, ‘What the f-ck am I doing in the studio with Justin Timberlake right now? This is crazy,'” SZA told Frost of her recording experience with Timberlake. “But when I heard his music and we started singing together… It’s like, ‘Oh, we speak the same language. The same frequency.’ I understood where he was going before he could finish a run.” We’re not surprised the two work well together, as the duo made some modern disco magic on lead single “The Other Side” for the Trolls World Tour.
Some other exciting collabs on SZA’s new album may include Sam Smith, Adam Levine, and Kendrick Lamar—her TDE label mate, who also appeared on CTRL. We’re also still holding out for that long-rumored collaboration between SZA, Mark Ronson, and Tame Impala, a mix of artists as groovy as it gets. With SZA’s power, style, and versatility, we wouldn’t be surprised if SZA delivers a record with someone special on almost every track.
Though we were devastated when SZA had to cut her tenure short on 2018’s “The Championship Tour,” we are very confident that SZA will go on tour in 2021—as long as it’s safe. We truly cannot wait for more SZA singles to arrive in the lead-up to her sophomore album, hopefully due out in 2020.