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After yesterday’s release of the super poppy “Right By My Side” from Roman Reloaded, today’s leak of “Beez In The Trap,” featuring 2 Chainz, is a look at raw Nicki Minaj. It doesn’t sound like she is channeling any of her trademark characters on this track, other than giving a nod to Kanye West with the lyric “can’t tell me nothin’.”

This track puts Nicki’s verses over a very sparse production that, along with her slowed cadence and laconic style, throws back to the style of early, stripped down hip hop, but with a huge dose of Watch The Throne-style posturing. Minaj keeps it democratic despite the sound, name checking a laundry list of major cities from New York to Miami to Detroit.

This is just the latest in a barrage of Minaj publicity over the last week in anticipation of the April 3 release of Roman Reloaded. She’s also got a cover for Complex magazine landing on her album release date, in which she’s made up in the Minaj interpretation of an over-the-top geisha. When asked about her theatrics, Minaj told the mag, “…I’m not doing it for everyone else. I’m doing it to prove to myself that I can do it. To prove to myself that I don’t have to settle for less because I’m a female rapper or because I’m black.”

Minaj is well-known for the multiple personalities she’s developed for performances, but when asked about her off-stage persona Minaj says, “I’m the biggest homebody. But I’ve been like this. Nothing about me has changed since I got fame. I never liked to go to clubs. I never liked to go out. I don’t know where that public craziness came from.”

-Courtney E. Smith

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