Janelle Monae: “Make Me Feel”

On “Make Me Feel,” one of two new singles from Janelle Monáe’s Dirty Computer (the musician’s first LP in five years), the polymath unpacks a rubbery funk tune that recalls the likes of Prince and Sheila E. Her 1980s influences are clear, down to each massive synth line and the feeling of raw sensual energy woven throughout the song. Much like her previous work, “Make Me Feel” is a flashy mix of modern bounce and old soul that

puts her dulcet voice on full display. Perhaps inspired by her recent success on the big screen—in films like the Oscar Best Picture-winning Moonlight and Oscar nominated Hidden Figures—the video for “Make Me Feel” is equally theatrical, taking colorful cues from “Black Mirror” (think Season Three’s exquisite “San Junipero” episode) and the wide-open feel of the Purple One’s “Kiss.” With its irresistible, sugary pop ethos, “Make Me Feel” could be Monáe’s most straightforward single. Yet this point in her trajectory, where Monáe is the most visible she’s ever been, the song is a clear statement of strength, freedom, and continued evolution.

Leave a Comment