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story.lead_photo.caption Missy Elliott, "Iconology" (Atlantic)

Take "Iconology" for what it sounds like: an exceedingly slapdash and minimal release under 15 minutes in length rush-released to cash in on Missy Elliott's Video Vanguard honor at the best VMAs in more than a decade. Her first collection since 2005 is even shorter when you snip one of the two versions of the sung doo-wop "Why I Still Love You" — I'd keep the a cappella one, more impressive for bucking longtime accusations that her beats call the shots. The three other tunes are high-quality, low-budget reboots of her signature bump: "Throw It Back" pretends a single sleigh bell shake is as striking as the elephant in "Work It," and the footwork-goes-old-school "Cool Off" is cleverly inflected to sound like "culo." Most forgettable and conventional is "DripDemeanor," featuring someone named Sum1. Just because we missed her so much doesn't mean she owed us an album, though it wouldn't have killed her to put 2015's stickier "WTF (Where they From)" on this. And when that album does arrive, you betcha "Iconology" helped take the pressure off. 

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