SOME CORNER FOR DZORWULU – EP
I can’t tell how many times I listened to this project just to make sure I grasped every little bit of information I could about what I was experiencing and I’m sure I still missed out on a lot. This four-track project with self-proclaimed “alte nomad”, Kay-Ara, badass Ghana-based Nigerian artiste, Tinuke, and producer and MC, Alex Wondergem, does a splendid job of taking the listener on a journey of highs and lows whilst still making it a sonically pleasing experience. I’m going to let you in on how I felt about each track and the project as a whole; from the flow, production, instrumentation and even the project artwork. Let’s geauxx…
Starting off with a gritty, confident medley, we’re introduced to “GOD MC”. With a culmination of Kay-Ara’s punchlines (“…seamstress…seem stressed …”), Tinuke’s savage attitude and Alex Wondergem’s transition from light to dark in his verses, this alte rap/hip-hop tune definitely asserts itself as the first song in the project. The lyrics are well-crafted, intentional, bold and intense and it’s produced in a way that makes you have respect for or fear of the artistes but still want to jam out to them. The instrumentation is reminiscent of a Kung-fu theme song and it brings forward the theme of dominance, power and godliness I believe the artistes were going for. The gunshot and low-pitched voice at the end saying “and if you know you’re a god then don’t be scared of the bullet” give it a slightly eeire feel and emphasise the invincible nature of a god. It’s definitely a great starter and a motivational one too.
How do I start talking about this song without sounding biased? I don’t think I can to be honest. It’s my absolute favourite on the project. This breezy, light, jazz-like medley is very different from its previous counterpart “GOD MC” in the sense that it’s playful throughout. The beat and lyrics alike are quite playful, refreshing and upbeat. You can tell the artistes had a lot of fun with this one based on little elements throughout the song like the ‘cha-ching’ of the counter at 1:52 or Alex Wondergem saying “… My one advice, leave the guns and bring the roses. Skidoosh…”. The trumpet solo towards the end was everything for me and I don’t think this song could/should have been named anything else other than “TRUMPET” because it really ties together its light-hearted nature. It’s short and sweet and it has this lounge music feel that I like. I don’t know if that was intentional but I enjoyed it regardless. This song has every sort of summer vibe you could think of and more without being corny.
With an appropriate duration of four(4) minutes and twenty(20) seconds, this green friendly but no-nonsense anthem starts off with moving sound from ear to ear to really place one in a mentally altered, ‘wavy’, setting. The artistes declare their love for bud in a somewhat melancholic and irritable manner. The trio make a groggy concoction that puts one in the mind state of a stoner; a bit lagging, tiny bit active and so chill to the point of not wanting to be pushed to do anything (like Tinuke says “…n*gga don’t rush me…”). The production here is kept minimal to really let the lyrics shine through and they did. This is probably one of the more confident and beautifully aggressive stoner songs I’ve heard.
DON’T HANG UP
This track starts off as a sombre lover(Kay-Ara)’s recollection and confession of infidelity. With so much more emotional depth in this one, Tinuke’s smooth sing-talking voice takes us through the mind of a lover processing this event (“… It’s a rainy day…mind in disarray…might run away…miss your warm embrace…”) and Alex Wondergem touches more on the side of striving to keep the connection with his partner (“…you was there when I needed you, so you know say I’ll be there for you…no matter the weather I’ll be there for you…”). The track then zooms off, literally, into an insightful excerpt from Jamaican spiritual leader, Mooji, (“When you stay as the self… you’re unconquerable but when you stay as the person… that is what get attacked you see. Who is this vulnerability?”) who invites us to discover our true, unwavering, selves. This solemn and warm ballad is a relatable story of the highs and lows of relationships and a definite tear jerker.
MY OVERALL IMPRESSION
As a whole I think this project does a great job of creating an environment for the listener to envision the stories told. It goes from a boisterous, confident theme to that of pain and heartbreak and does this with ease. It highlights the celebrations and tribulations of just being and switches between those themes so well and that’s what I enjoyed the most with this project. The artistes have also kept the sounds identifiable enough to be placed in the alternative music genre but with a sprinkle of fresh garnish here and there from the production, lyrics and theme transitions. The project artwork uses simple yet powerful imagery that conveys a certain seriousness from the artistes that compels one to find out what the project is about. And it definitely worked.