Missy Elliott Under Construction (Elektra/Warner) Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNN
Taking stock after the tragic death of her close friend Aaliyah, Missy Elliott realizes that life's too short not to have a good time. So instead of publicly mourning she has Timbaland cue up the dirt-funky old-school beats for Under Construction (out Tuesday) and gets freaky on the microphone for a whompin' set of party-rocking jams with Method Man, Jay-Z, Ludacris, Ms. Jade and Beyoncé Knowles. The backwards-flow trickery of Work It was a sneaky bit of misdirection to pass off an explicit rhyme as a catchy novelty. It'll be interesting to see how her eyebrow-raising punanny pep talk, P***ycat, er... goes down. Big, bad and beautiful.