THE CUTS is your weekly round-up of songs and videos-and anything that has caught our attention and think you must hear or see. The music featured here aren’t genre specific. THE CUTS is delivered every FRIDAY
DJ JULS – MY WAVE
‘If your first opening lines don’t grab the listener, it ain’t shit’. This was the advice Kendrick Lamar received from legendary rapper Ice Cube. It seems the advice doesn’t only apply to rappers. It applies to the art of curating a playlist (for DJs) and sequencing songs on an album (for artistes) as well. The above principle is evidently displayed on Leap Of Faith, the new EP by producer and DJ, Juls. The first track, My Wave is as grabbing as any opening track could get. The beat is infectious, the arrangement is literally consuming and the voices drip with moisture.
Enlisting fast rising Nigerian artiste, Odunsi The Engine and Sona, who combined brilliantly (voice wise and energy) to wreak havoc on the brightly made beat that surround the song (the inescapable highlife grooves). The excellently placed guitar riffs and the horns on the on the song is the most appealing element of the song. I give it to DJ Juls for that over 1 minute of ‘dance time’ before the song fades; an odd trick in this era. ‘My Wave’ oozes pleasure. It is the kind of song you play on top volume with your car windows down or when in a drop-top. A full review of Leap of Faith would be up next week.
ELI Muzik & Alex Wondergem: Je M’en Bat Les Couilles
Buying Our Freedom is a collaborated EP between Ghanaian afro neo soul artiste, Eli Muzik and Alex Wondergem released somewhere last week (a full review of the EP out next week). The 6 track EP is an interesting collection of original compositions about life, legalization of cannabis, what it means to be human. In short, it’s a reflection on Ghana, the country. The lyrics of the songs are very blunt and ‘raw’-something I never associated with Eli. Je M’en Bat Les Couilles is an example of the unconventionality (lyrically speaking) displayed by Eli. A soulful tune which sees Eli throwing the F word around. One could hear his frustrations on the opening lines of the song: ‘this is a reflections of how I feel… I don’t give a fuck’. The pain in his voice along with the lyrics on the song makes ‘Je M’en Bat Les Couilles’ a befitting title for the song. If you don’t understand a word of French, the title translate as ‘I don’t give or care a shit’
Poetra Asantewa ft KMRU – Round Pegs
Round Pegs, an expression with a negative connotation. It’s used to describe individuals who don’t fit into a space due to lack of skills. Sometimes, those we consider as round pegs defy our perceptions; rising to the top of their trade. These are the people poet, Poetra Asantewa is speaking about on her new spoken word piece Round Pegs, a joint work between Kenyan Electronic music producer KMRU (Joseph Kamaru) and herself. Round Pegs criticizes the notion of people forcing kids to pursue certain professions they have zero interest. She instead calls on people to encourage kids to dream and help them pursue their interest since ‘we all can be kings’, as the hook says. This is how she describes ‘Round Pegs’: ‘Moved out of my comfort zone working with KMRU – Kenyan electronic producer. Round pegs is spoken word fused with electronic!’
AKAN – Manhole
AKAN, for the first time is talking about love on his latest single Manhole. He narrates his experiences with unrequited love-where he was treated or felt like a manhole (waste or loser). He weaves a story about how his affection went unrecognized, his state of loneliness (the door to my heart is opened. I need someone to fill it). He begs for the hollowness left by her to be filled by something. ‘I’d be fulfilled if you’d stay with me for just one night). I must confess my admiration at the roll out of this track. Akan and his team teased fans with it, and later released a ‘fun fact’ video (Genius style) about the song. It was a poem written in English which Akan expanded into a song. He translated the English worded poem into Twi. JaySo was on hand to provide the trap beat, helping bring Manhole to life.
Kay-Ara – High On Epiphany.
Kay-Ara is covering a lot of grounds since his 4-year hiatus-which, according to rumors saw him seeking God’s face. That rumor is what Kay-Ara partly addressed on his latest song/video ‘High On Epiphany’. The opening note to this Yaw P directed video plays humorously on this rumor: Rukie didn’t find God or faith. He was hiding in an uncompleted building. And that’s where the two-in-one video began-in an uncompleted video with Kay-Ara taking a piss. The video is raw and energetic with Kay-Ara on his worst behavior-action wise and lyrically: ‘I used to chill in the back/left space now back to fill in the gap’. It’s like watching an uncut version of the video. It has no storyline; just Kay-Ara showcasing his lyrical prowess before he ducked for 4 years. ‘High On Epiphany’ is Kay-Ara proving to all he still has bars for days. He hasn’t lost his skills on the mic cos he’s ‘God’s Son, I bleed Hova’