Werking it: Stella Mwangi releases music video for her Italian radio hit “Work”

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Fifth Harmony, Rihanna and Britney Spears are just some of the divas who’ve espoused the virtues of gainful employment. And now Kenyan-Norwegian singer-rapper Stella Mwangi has joined their ranks with her latest single “Work”.

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Bih why u frontin'?

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Taken from her eponymous EP, “Work” has slowly built up momentum since its release in the spring. The track is proving particularly popular in Italy, where it slipped into the top 50 radio charts and top ten radio dance charts. And it’s not hard to see why.

Stella offers up what’s easily her most mainstream effort since “Haba Haba”. Yet it’s also completely different. Whereas her Eurovision 2011 entry was all niceness and twee – remember, it was dedicated to her granny – “Work” remains authentic to her grittier post-Düsseldorf material.

But unlike, say, “Identify Yourself” or “Chuku Hatua”, this is chart-ready. Mwangi spits out lyrics with the ferocity of an on-form Nicki Minaj. And her utterances are ridiculously addictive. They say repetition is a brilliant way to increase the impact of a message, which is certainly the case here. “Work” is repeated so many times that we lose count.

Meanwhile, the beat goes in and out, up and down, back and forth from ear to ear like a musical saw. The overall effect is completely hypnotic.

The accompanying music video sees Stella and her posse at the gym. They workout while simultaneously werking the floor. Hapless male gym users are driven to distraction as the ladies ooze feminine allure. Whether they’re lifting weights or striding on the cross-trainer, Stella and friends have the boys under their spell.

Stella Mwangi “Work” Official Music Video

Not content with conquering her local gym, Stella is quite literally taking on the fashion world. Sportswear giant Reebok are using “Work” to soundtrack their “Free Your Style” ad campaign, while the tune also featured prominently in Tommy Hilfiger’s spring summer show.

And Stella practices what she raps. Not one to rest, her Steffy De Cicco collaboration “I Like That” quickly follows on her previous single’s trainer-clad heels. It’s more in line with the rest of her discography, packing a harder urban punch. “STL you know who I am”, she raps. Yes Stella, we most certainly do.

Steffy De Cicco feat. Stella Mwangi “I Like That”

Has “Work” got you all in a sweat? And what about “I Like That”? Let us know in the comments below.

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