Get ready for a red-hot collaboration that sets the scene on fire when Shensea, a fresh Grammy nominee for Kanye West’s DONDA, joins forces with 2022 Grammy nominee Megan Thee Stallion on her explosive new 2022 single: “Lick.” Get ready for a daring and very sexual track that leaves little to the imagination.
“Lick” takes inspiration from the past, incorporating a sample of Denise Belfon’s “Work,” which was also interspersed with DJ Flex’s iconic “Put Your Back In It.” However, while the intention is laudable, the execution falls short on several fronts. It’s hard not to draw comparisons to the 2020 smash hit “WAP,” when two powerful women deliver crisp lyrics and captivating performances in its accompanying music video. Though “Lick” tries to establish her own identity, “WAP’s” shadow looms over him, unintentionally casting a familiar undertone to the track. To really carve out a lane for its own, “Lick” misses out on an opportunity to embrace Shenseea’s dancehall roots, as the song’s production, under the direction of Murda Beatz, veers toward a more sparse, rap-aligned soundscape, devoid of its possible uniqueness. Shensee has blessed us with soulful dance anthems like “Rebel,” “Be Good” and “Foreplay” before, so it’s a shame to downgrade her solid dancehall foundation to a sampler that carries most of the weight, but still fits. feel powerless.
While Shensee’s parts demonstrate her solid delivery, they feel a bit lackluster at times. However, it’s the pre-chorus that interrupts the flow of the song, feeling somewhat out of place when placed at the beginning. “Lick” has a subdued start, making the explosive hook feel slightly disconnected. Megan Thee Stallion’s verse, on the other hand, brings a delicious dynamic to the track, particularly with its seductive flow towards the end. The main problems of “Lick” lie in its structure. There’s a clear vision at play, and hidden within is the potential for a powerful party anthem. Also, Murda Beatz’s choice of production for this song seems a bit off, as the derivative soundscape clouds its impact. Megan has previously demonstrated her ability to adapt to dancehall-adjacent beats on songs like “Intercourse” on Good News, suggesting that further exploration in this direction might have improved the overall experience. “Lick” sounds more like an unfinished demo than a radio hit single leading up to an album release. With two performers like Shenseea and Megan, one can only wish they would realize their combined power and talent really do fly.
So get ready for an intense clash of art and sensuality when Shenseea and Megan Thee Stallion team up on “Lick.” While the song may fall short in certain respects, it still manages to deliver an electrifying experience that leaves us yearning for a more refined version of its capabilities. The chemistry between these two outstanding artists is undeniable, and with the right direction and production, they have the ability to create something truly extraordinary. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for what’s to come as Shenseea and Megan continue to conquer new sonic territory with their unparalleled talent.