Taylor Swift: “Karma” [ft. Ice Spice]

Back in January, before she had even released her debut EP, Ice Spice was thinking about pop dominance. “I do want to be a mainstream artist,” she told the New York Times. “I want diamond records and plaques and Grammys. So I think in order to get that, you do have to surpass just one subgenre.” A scant five months later, the Bronx rapper has netted two top five hits and a handful of plaques for the wall, forging ahead on an avowedly traditionalist path to superstardom, which includes pledging fealty to pop’s old guard.

Now, she’s landed one of pop’s ultimate co-signs: a collaboration with Taylor Swift. Her remix of the Midnights track “Karma” is not Swift’s best rap collaboration (that would be Reputation’s “End Game,” featuring Future) nor is it the most interesting song she released today (that would be “Hits Different”). Like a lot of pop-rap collaborations, the “Karma” remix feels strangely utilitarian, a feat of marketing and pop diplomacy. Ice Spice’s verse lacks the rat-a-tat velocity of her starmaking turn on PinkPantheress’ “Boy’s a Liar Pt. 2”—“Karma is your check’s boutta bounce/Karma is the fire in your house,” she raps—and the clash of sensibilities dulls a little of the original’s over-the-top, high-camp shine. But at the end of the day, the “Karma” remix will likely be Ice Spice’s first No. 1 hit, marking the exact moment that she ascended to pop’s A-list—and that “opps” entered your mom’s vocabulary.