Your weekly dose of the best new sounds around the continent!
"Baddest Boy Remix" - Skiibii ft Davido
In usual Skibii fashion, he reemerges with a hit, buoyed by the star power of one of the game's biggest in Davido. Originally released as one of the sleepers on his latest project God is Bigger than Man, the record's unexpected remix could help it take on a new life. The spare beat is mired in whimsical lyricism, bars like "shey you go chop African koboko" stick around but never quite attain the sort of remembrance either act would have hope for.
"Number 1" - Shinzu & MIMS
The aptly positioned (and named) intro track to newcomer Shinzu's debut EP Extra Year is titled Number 1. Starting the project off with some much-needed enthusiasm, the duet of sorts introduces the singer as a slick-talking lover seeking his partner's affections. His solitary verse is capped off by an equally sturdy verse from patois-slinging rapper MIMS. Against the soft guitar and passionate backup coos, their polarizing styles make for good chemistry.
"Mr Man" - Fave
Fave expressed desires to portray more than one brand of vulnerability on her records late last year. In the time since, she put together an EP with five records she felt best encapsulated her emotional state(s). While "Mr Man" might not be the most visceral of her records, it is one of the most earnest. Without reaching into pick-me territory, she manages to share her desire for intimacy without ever appearing to need it.
"Mercy" - Adekunle Gold
Released this Friday as the fourth single in support of his impending fourth album Catch Me if You Can, Mercy is a slightly more abrasive AG than any of his most recent efforts. Leveraging his newfound success and acclaim as buffers, he attempts to fish out his detractors and keep his distance. Opening with adulatory bars from his wife Simi, he delves straight into the weight of his blessings and begs for mercy from his enemies.
"Agolo (Shimza Remix)" - Angelique Kidjo
The second remix on Press Play this week comes courtesy of prolific South African house DJ Shimza and legendary Beninese songstress, Angelique Kidjo. Largely a mess of synthesized loops and spacey percussion, Shimza's reimagining of Angelique's 1994 hit record, Agolo, takes it to an entirely different kind of dance floor. If Agolo was great for birthday parties, now it is ready for Ibiza.
"Omo Ope" - Asake & Olamide
The Magic Stickz-produced Omo Ope arrives courtesy of budding Afrobeat star Asake. Enlisting Olamide, the Nigerian industry's most consistent collaborator in search of his first major hit, Asake seems to have struck gold with Omo Ope. Ignore the pejorative title and what it alludes to in society today, the record when taken literally is a simplistic Nigerian pop song with the right elements in the right pockets.
"All Eyes on Me" - Portable & Barry Jhay
Seemingly unprepared to lose any momentum, Portable returns to the release cycle this week with another collaborator. Tapping Barry Jhay this time, his attentions have shifted to paying attention to the attention he's being paid. Heavy on the praise for his changed fortunes, he glides across the pro-percussive instrumentation effortlessly as does Barry Jhay. Their styles perfectly complement each other and "All Eyes on Me" is further proof that Portable is anything but a one-trick pony. His emotive crooning is crucial to his success and it is his most defined muscle, one he is not afraid to flex.