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Press Play: New Music From Mr Eazi, Wande Coal, Bisa Kdei & More

Your weekly dose of the best new songs on the continent!

We're still living in a pandemic and its endless resulting effects, but at least we've had an ample serving of tunes to keep us company. Each week, the B.Side staff will round up a guide to the best new songs on the continent. Dig in and enjoy.

Preyé - “Peace Of Mind”

Preye is the queen of taking her time. In her music career that has spanned about six years, she has put out only eight official singles. However, every one of those releases has been worth the wait, and so is her latest drop, “Peace Of Mind” – her first single in almost a year. Just like the title suggests, Preyé is searching for some peace of mind, just like everyone else. Her warm and soulful voice sits gallantly on soft kicks as she continuously sings, “I must to find me some peace of mind (someway, somehow) / I must to love me some peace of mind (someway, somehow)”. At just two minutes long, this record is short but incredibly soothing and peaceful. Preyé manages to give her listeners some tranquillity while searching for inner peace. The irony.

Mr Eazi & Dre Skull ft Popcaan - “Sekkle & Bop”

It is no news that Mr Eazi is no longer just a musician. He has slowly morphed into a business tycoon and a musical mastermind of some sort. After giving his local fans solid and evergreen bangers for a couple of years, he made his way to the U.K, hoping to expand his fanbase. He made fun records with acts like Giggs, Raye, Sneakbo, Anne Marie, and a host of others, successfully expanding his reach. His next stop was Europe ー Latin America to be precise. He teamed up with reggaeton heavyweights like J Balvin and Bad Bunny to deliver memorable songs like “Lento” and “COMO UN BEBÉ”. On his latest release, “Sekkle & Bop”, he looks like he has found his next stop, the Caribbean islands. This time he teams up with St. Thomas’ finest, Popcaan and American producer Dre Skull to deliver an infectious bop tailor-made for waist breaking and sweaty dance floors.

YKB - “Alabama (Freestyle)”

Anyone paying close attention to the bubbling underground Afropop scene would definitely have come across YKB (formerly: YusufKanbai). His sultry voice, fun persona, and catchy melodies and lingo make him hard to both miss and ignore. “Alabama”, his latest single, embodies everything that makes YKB YKB. He begins the song with words from the viral video of the boy flaunting a couple of 1000 naira notes: “Money! Who go visit me bayi? Ko po ke!”, highlighting how he can take the most random things and make them work on a record. He goes on to deliver extremely catchy melodies, ad-libs and scatter-brained lyrics over Finito & Soundz’ scintillating beat.

Bisa Kdei - “Slow”

Ronald Kwaku Del Appiah, aka Bisa Kdei is a stalwart of the Ghanian highlife and pop scene. However, on “Slow”, his latest drop, he makes a foray into R&B/Soul and he excels with aplomb. The lush track is awash in sweet guitar riffs and licks, soft kicks and gentle keys, giving Bisa Kdei an ambient platform to deliver sensual and braggadocious lyrics. With a runtime of just 2 minutes, “Slow” ends before you even know it. My guess, it was designed that way on purpose. “Slow” has such a slick and relaxing feel to it, it’ll have you almost damaging your repeat button.

DJ Neptune & Wande Coal - “Music Messiah”

Seeing Wande Coal on a record these days is like sighting the solar eclipse. Aside from his rare appearances, you never really know which Wande Coal would turn up. While his talent is undoubted and unmatched, he delivers lacklustre performances from time to time. Two years ago, he dropped the brilliant “Again” and everyone thought the resurgence of Black Diamond had begun. Sadly, he followed up with the disappointing “Realms” EP. Thankfully, on his latest outing, he’s at his sharpest, delivering snappy lyrics and ad-libs. He’s also in his melody bag, using his incredibly sonorous voice to good effect as he coos smoothly over Dapiano’s Amapiano-inspired production.

Terri ft Bella Shmurda & Mohbad - “Money”

Terri is currently on the sturdiest and best run of his career so far. After his cameo on Wizkid’s Made In Lagos, he has featured on a handful of other records, stealing the show on most. He also released “Come Around” ー one of the strongest songs in his catalogue ー just a couple of months ago. He’s not slowing down his momentum as he is back again with the Tuzi-produced “Money”. His verse opens with wise words that Pete Edochie would be proud of: “Anything wey better pass money na more money more money”. He’s also assisted with in-form street-hop rappers Mohbad and Bella Shmurda, who both bring their unique and distinct styles, making “Money” well-rounded. Their verses see them both bragging about their moolah while also seeking more.

Steve Caise ft GUNZOE - “Monalisa”

Steve Caise has been slowly making a strong case for himself since stepping onto the scene in 2016. He has released solid records like “Pull Up”, “Chilling”, “Felawitheswag” all which showcase his dancehall-inspired brand of music fused with strong Afropop elements. Today, he released Against all Odds, his first body of work and “Monalisa” instantly stands out. It highlights everything that makes Steve Caise so promising. From his deep-voiced inflections and liquid flow, down to his patois-tinged singing. Along with Gunzoe, they both slip in and out of flows and colorful melodies while also flexing their impressive lyrical chops, displaying their dexterous musicality.

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