Anitta, Brazilian Queen of Pop™, returned to us on Friday (November 9) with not one, not two, but three new songs – in three different languages no less – for her first-ever EP, called Solo.
The collection includes the Spanish-language “Veneno,” the Portuguese-language “Não Perco Meu Tempo,” and the English-language “Goals.” What’s more? All of the songs come with their own music videos, directed by João Papa.
“The idea is that this EP could connect me in a certain way to all my fans, in Brazil and out of it,” she said in a statement.
Fun fact: the EP title comes from the fact that she opted not to do any collaborations this time around. Thus, solo.
As she explained to me in the our chat for Paper earlier in the summer, the long-awaited, long-teased “Veneno” finds Anitta getting down with some group play. Oh, and snakes – 29 of ’em to be exact, serving “I’m A Slave 4 U” on steroids.
The video’s concept is actually a reference to a Brazilian artist: Luz Del Fuego, a dancer famous for his performances with snakes. She even had her skin specially prepared with a technique that took three hours to paint, mimicking the appearance and texture of scales.
“In the end, they [the snakes] and Anitta were already best friends,” the director joked of the BFFdom. “It was pretty nice to see her connection to the snakes. This ended up generating some images that are impossible to plan or do more than once.”
The only part she didn’t like, apparently? Not the slithering creatures around her…but the mud. “I did not know I did not like mud. But the result of this take was incredible, and it was worth it,” she says.
A brave legend…in need of a quick bath.
The more exploratory – and eyebrow-raising – “Não Perco Meu Tempo Mais” follows Anitta as she finds herself, quite literally – very Kylie “Come Into My World” – in a windowless room surrounded by a bunch of Anittas. And while she’s in there, she’s left to make out with an astonishing two dozen people of varying genders, sexualities – you name it, she’ll kiss it, which is actually reminiscent of the standard Saturday night out for myself.
“I was hesitant at first, but then relaxed. Everyone who participated cooperated very much. Of course it was something unheard of for me, but that one is not Larissa, it’s like she’s a character,” she says of the concept.
For this, the director used “motion control” to reproduce the same camera movements to make multi-Anittas, while the stylists opted for a minimalist wardrobe.
“We were careful with colors and textures. We chose a brown look because it is a color that looks chic in it and, at the same time, perfectly matches the aesthetics and light of the video. The black clothes were thought to pass the idea of neutrality to cause this confusion between the personalities of Anitta,” explained stylist André Philipe.
The track’s beat gives me a little hint of J Balvin and Nicky Jam‘s “X.” Queen of Controversy, too: the video’s racked up quite an impressive amount of dislikes for all that rampant, indiscriminate kissing.
Leave it to a pop princess to inspire outrage over some lip-locking…
And then, there’s “Goals,” a sultry serving of self-empowerment produced by none other than the Hard Candy and Sweetener maestro himself, Pharrell.
As opposed to making love to snakes or making out with people, Anitta opted for pure beauty – and spotlighting that famous bunda in a shimmering bodysuit: “I wanted to do something that had a great visual effect, with lots of lights and stars…it’s one of the most beautiful works I’ve ever done,” she says of the glimmering clip.
It was also quite a difficult video to capture on camera: “This is the most complex work I’ve ever done. Our wish was to film the clip with a real sky reflected on a mirrored floor, but that was impossible…it was an immense technical challenge that was only possible because we worked with the best professionals in Brazil,” said the director.
Of the three tracks, “Veneno” is definitely the immediate and infectious standout – although they all offer their own unique flavor. None of them are duds, truthfully.
As cultural barriers continue to topple with each passing day, Anitta is staying ahead of the global domination game by delivering the goods for multiple markets at once. She’s quite a giving pop star, and a smart businesswoman, to serve up such a diverse array of sights and sounds.
Now then, Anitta: it’s time to take up those Parseltongue lessons and deliver a sssssickening bop for your brand new BFFs.
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Solo was released on November 9. (iTunes)