Longtime collaborators Missy Elloitt and Timbaland debuted “9th Inning” and “Triple Threat” on New York’s Hot 97, before taking to Ustream to chat with fans and promote Elliott’s upcoming album, tentatively titled either Class Dismissed or the previously announced Block Party.
“A lot of folks have came and sat here and went, but we’re still here,” Timbaland noted of the duo’s two decade career. “We’re blessed.”
The two singles find Elliott and Timbo trading verses like no time had passed. “9th Inning” stomps through a dizzying piano riff while Missy catalogues her greatness: “I’m so hot/Up on the chart Number One spot/See me on the top and I won’t flop/Missy never stopped, got the music game on lock.” But Timbaland steals the show with a nod to his late-career pop leanings: “Ain’t no real artists/Wack talent get in, real starving/All you hear in the music is the chorus,” but not before a well placed pitched: “I like Lady Gaga/Won’t you let a nigga do your whole album?”
“Triple Threat” clocks in at a slower tempo and harder bounce, nodding toward the inescapable trap sound that has commandeered rap’s dance floor. Tim interpolates Pimp C while Missy slips lines through like “get the finger, middle finger/Me and Timabaland the new Ike and Tina.”
Despite the boasts, neither collaboration recalls the forward-thinking hits the duo clocked in during their heyday, both as artists and as a songwriting and production team for the late Aaliyah. When asked for their thoughts on Drake’s “commanding” of a posthumous Aaliyah album, Elliott and Tim were more reserved than some of their peers, but still took a firm stance: “No call has been made to me,” Elliott again confirmed. “I have to respect her family, and until they come and say they’re ready to do an Aaliyah album then I don’t really want to get into that because it’s very sensitive. It’s not records that already done came out, we’re talking about unfinished music. And we don’t know what her reasoning for not putting those records out. Maybe she didn’t feel like they were her best work.”
The rapper also discussed the passing of her former manager and friend, Chris Lighty. “That was heavy, but outside of that situation, I’m blessed,” Elliott commented. “As we get older in life it’s important to check up on people,” Timbaland continued. “Money don’t mean nothing. You can have all the money and be the most miserable person in life.” Later on Ustream, Eliott remained positive: “I feel great, I’m blessed to be sitting here reaching out to such great fans, and I say that from the heart. no one could imagine being here ten 20 years later and be talking to such dedicated fans, and new fans. We are appreciative.”