The 48-year-old rapper surprised fans with Iconology, a five-song EP, on Friday. The mini-album marks Elliott's first studio project since 2005’s The Cookbook.
Produced by Elliott, Timbaland, and Wili Hendrix, Iconology includes her latest single, "Throw It Back," as well as "Cool Off," "DripDemeanor (Feat. Sum 1)" and "Why I Still Love You?," the latter followed by a special bonus version, "Why I Still Love You? (Acapella)."
Elliott also released the music video for "Throw It Back," which co-stars Teyana Taylor.
On Thursday, the hip-hop legend announced the release, along with unveiling the avant-garde cover art, which features the GRAMMY winner in an embroidered jacket and long braids that spell her name.
“This year has been a tremendous year for me…I am humbled and grateful,” she captioned the Instagram post. “THANK YOU for allowing me to smell the roses. You, my fans, and God are the reason I am here and have celebrated every milestone with me! So, I have a SURPRISE for you... let’s continue the celebration at midnight tonight…I’m dropping a collection of new songs! Let’s #ThrowItBack to a time when music just felt good and made us want to dance!” Elliott, who received an honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music this past May, signed off with her new title, “Dr. Melissa ‘Missy’ Elliott.”
The Virginia native has lots to celebrate. In June, Elliott became the first female hip-hop artist to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and she’s still breaking barriers. Next week, Elliott will become the first female rapper to be honored with the Video Vanguard Award at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards.
The show will air live from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, on Monday, Aug. 26, at 8 p.m. ET/PT.