Ashanti-Never-Should-Have

It’s been, as we in the industry like to say, ‘a hot minute’ since we last heard from Ashanti.

By now, you’ve probably already worn down your copies of Chapter II, Concrete Rose, The Declaration, Ashanti’s Christmas and Collectables by Ashanti. After all, the “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” chanteuse hasn’t been seen anywhere on the Hot 100 since 2008’s underrated #37 smash, “The Way That I Love You” (you know, the one where she kills her boyfriend.)

But all that’s about to change with “Never Should Have”: A legitimately great, genuinely emotional new break-up anthem from the industry’s Concrete Rose—also known as Empress of R&B, Queen ‘Shanti.

I can think of about a half million things I never should have done, including investing in white jeans, flat-ironing my hair in college and just about everything I did last Saturday night, but Miss Douglas has just one thing on her mind: Your trifling ass.

“You never should have loved me/You never should have touched me/You never should have told me you loved me, and you would never leave me,” Ashanti achingly croons above the slow-soldiering drums and light flourishes of electronica, crafted by producer Mansur. It’s got a real striding, anthemic feel–it’s on that Toni Braxton “Yesterday” level, replacing the empowerment with a whole lot of pain. Hell, it’s even a little bit Ryan Tedder.

Keep yelling at bitches to bow down, King Bey—Ashanti is busy over here churning out legitimate heartbreak smashes.

“Never Should Have” is the latest track to drop from Ashanti’s upcoming fifth studio album Braveheart, due out on June 4. It’s also a tie-in with her current turn on Lifetime’s Army Wives playing Latasha Montclair, which began airing on March 10–so On Demand that shit immediately if you haven’t already.

Now, you know what’s left to do: Buy “Never Should Have” on iTunes—or remain foolish forever.

“Never Should Have” was released on March 26. (iTunes)