By Jose Mujica
September 12, 2020
Charlotte R&B singer Cyanca surprised her fans with a deluxe version of her 2017 EP, Isle of Queens, featuring two new remixes for the tracks “New Phone, Who Dis?” and “Eat.” This latest iteration finds Cyanca collaborating with Cleveland soul-singer Durand Bernarr on the “New Phone, Who Dis?” remix and Charlotte’s own Elevator Jay on “Eat.”
On the remix and video for “Eat,” fried chicken, a staple of Southern cuisine, plays a symbolic role. Highlighting iconic Charlotte chicken spots like Price’s Chicken Coop and Chicken King, Cyanca celebrates the city dancing in the middle of the Krispy Krunch Chicken gas station location on Glenwood. In the video, we see Elevator Jay’s card declined for his gas station food before his verse hits: “sick and tired of all this pain, roll up ‘fore a n**** go insane.” He walks down the street invoking all the sacrifice and work it took to “break the chains,” and then comes across Cyanca walking down the same street. His verse ends by sweeping into Cyanca’s soulful chorus and the narrative comes full circle as Cyanca offers Jay some of her food.
Good visuals can add so much more meaning to an already catchy song and the video directed by 12AM Collective and Amelia Vanderplow accomplishes that by highlighting aspects of Southern culture with a vintage look. The video also features brief cameos from Charlotte artists Southside Gauxst, Fannie Mae, and Well$.
On the newly added verse for “New Phone,” Durand Bernarr, who is best known for his back-up vocals on tour with Erykah Badu, immediately strikes a humorous tone as he decries: “You wanna sit on your ass? Boy bye! And you got a huge ass head, small fry.” Bernarr’s boastful harmonics revolve around celebrating success and humbling haters. A quick dose of confidence, Bernarr’s edgy addition rounds out Cyanca’s more soft-spoken swagger on a song that has amassed well over a half a million streams on the original.