Critical Breakdown:- Paybac And Charlie X – The Other Side Of The...

Critical Breakdown:- Paybac And Charlie X – The Other Side Of The Radio [ Mixtape Review ]


Reviewed By Obinna Fred

See, I Don Lose Control, Don Lose Body And Soul, I Dey For Hells Kitchen So, Tryna Find My Pot Of Gold – Paybac [ The River Niger And Benue Song ]

Artiste(s):- Paybac And Charlie X
Mixtape:- The Other Side Of The Radio
Record Label:- Timeless Music
Distributed By:- Soundcloud/Online Media Platforms
Guest Appearances:- Rexx, Christine Ben Ameh, Sizzle Pro, Yung Soss, Tamaraebi, Maka P And Sizzle Pro
Producers:- Sizzle Pro, Charlie X And Black Intel

Critical Breakdown
In the last two years, Paybac has been one of the most consistent and resilient Nigerian MC’s to step on the scene, though he had been dropping a few freestyles and popping up on a few underground collaborations, he hadn’t garnered enough impetus to drop a full length project, until last year, when he finally decided to unleash his first project The Iboro Tape which flew over the heads of a lot of Rap heads, but that didn’t cause him to relent, as 2 months later, he release an EP With the masked producer Charlie X called The Broken Symphony EP, which was released with a self penned Free E-Book titled Diary of a Super Hero and also features Artistes like Boogey, Ruby Gyang and Jumar.the project was better received than the last, setting the stage for his new offering The Other Side of The Radio, another collaborative Project with Charlie X, which is a 13 Track conceptual Mixtape which was inspired by the current state of Hip-Hop Music on Nigeria  Radio, and an interpretation of what it should sound like from the minds of two creative individuals.

Paybacs Volvo Music [ Official Music Video ]

The Intro is a simple Radio sweep that jumps from one station to the other, and immediately settles on track 2 Written In The Cowries, which sees Paybac go off over a Bounce/Trap instrumental ( I call it “Snap” Music) , and he managed to hold it down on this song, though these “Southern Souding Beats” have never really been his Forte, he still created a decent Album opener, declaring “Im Just Playing my Role” and spitting rapidly over the uptempo instrumental.Follow Follow comes next, and samples the late great Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, the instrumental was deftly produced, and stripped the track of all it’s “Afro” Elements, and left the Jazzy sound which created an atmosphere on the track that was more Miles Davis than Fela, it gave Paybac the opening to play with words, and the concept of being the leader of the new school rapping “I hit drums you run / I hit the Mic, and you do like Mike and Jump”.Next song switches the sound of the Album to a more melancholic sombre sound, on Daddys Grand Cherokee , which features Crooner Maka P a song on which Paybac goes down memory lane, rapping about his late Dad, broken hopes and dreams, as well as the hurt which he felt when his Dad passed, Its a heartfelt song which I could relate with as someone whose Daddy was a Great Man, and used to stay back after church just to shake hands myself, not to talk about going to Mr Biggs after Church, the song resonated well with me, a personal song on which he raps about his regrets, pains, loses and gains, and capped it with a brilliant piece of spoken word poetry at the end.The Next song The People are coming is a disjointed song,on which I thought he was basically rambling, It was really all over the place, and Paybac doesn’t really get any point across to me on this one.West Wingz Records Signee Yung Soss joins him on the next song Stressin’ and together they encapsulate the struggle,hustle and grind which Artistes in Nigeria ( especially Rappers ) go through before they can make it into the Big league, and Soss clearly outshone Paybac,who made the job easier for him by spitting weak bars like “Im the coolest since Coolio” .Ass Questions is an attempt at making a Radio/Commercial single, the result is a pretty good record which could well find its way into some Pop Playlists and garner some Radio spins if well promoted.From River Niger, To River Benue, It Feels Like A Long Way, Home For Me, he croons on the next single The River Niger And Benue Song, a Track which was laced with mellow keys, and haunting synths, has him rapping about disappointments, break ups and heartbreaks which he has encountered with girls along the way, and from the tone of his voice, you could tell he is speaking from experience and despite declaring “This aint a sad song” his emotions were betrayed by his tone on this song.The Cougar Song featuring Rexx is another song that has all the Trappings of a crossover track , with Rexx holding down the Hook well, and Paybac switching to storytelling mode, talking about his tryst with an older woman, its an engaging song, that shows he is deft at another important but much maligned aspect of Rap music (Story telling).Cracks in My Mask Featuring Christine Ben Ameh is one of the better songs on the Tape, with the soul singer giving a very good account of herself with a haunting hook where you could literally hear the pain in her voice, he went on to Rap about love gained and lost , as well as struggling to Juggle his relationship with his own inner Demons, a nice track which I could relate to as well. the Tape continues to the Eazy Plus featured Hate Love Song, another well crafted Radio song, as a Matter of Fact I feel this one should have a Video and promoted feverishly, Paybac was in his element on this one declaring he hates loves songs,and rhyming rapidly over a mid-tempo Pop groove,Eazy Plus killed the hook and together they went and created my favourite song on the Tape.An Ode to our next door West-African neighbours titled Hey Ghana Featuring Tamaraebi follows suit, this one is another good song, basically a love song to Ghana, and it starts off with little kids reciting the name of the track , on which he details his encounter in the Country, right from leaving the Airport in Nigeria, and rolling up in Kumasi , he didnt end it without shouting out Ghanaian MC M.anifest.He ends the Tape on a feel good note with Go and Get It Featuring Sizzle Pro, who serenaded on the hook smoothly, and Paybac doing what by now I know is one of his easiest things to do, Rap about Girls ( at least on this Tape ) , Its one for the ladies, complete with shout out to them at the end.

          Paybac is a Nice MC, who can pull different tricks on the mic, and has a wide array of concepts and I rate this tape the best of all his Tapes,but it is imperative to note he was practically eclipsed by all the Artistes who featured on this Tape, not in a competitive way, but performance wise, they all sounded like they had more on stake than him on the project Including the producers, but we would also observe that on this Project he has finally discovered how to make crossover songs, and shows signs of obvious growth;what remains is to get better at making these cross over commercial Records which can actually chart.However, he still struggles in the audibility department, as I Could barely hear a lot of his bars leaving me with very Few quotables from the Tape and one of the traits of a Great MC Is having a very audible tone and a great cadence.This Tape is definitely something that he can grow on, and his clear Chemistry with the Masked producer was at its best on here;I have to give credit to the producer, who did his best to capture what Paybac was trying to do and blessed him with an array of diverse sounds.

Beats/Production:-  8/10

Lyrics:- 6/10

Flow:- 6/10

Composition/Arrangement:- 7/10

Best Verse:- Daddy’s Grand Cherokee Verse 1 

Standout Track:- Hate Love Song Featuring Eazy Plus 

Musical Moment:- I Could Feel the Raw Pain and Emotion on Daddys Grand Cherokee 

Album Rating:- 6.8/10



  1. Glad I stumbled on this, dude has been hardworking and consistent over the last few years, this is a decent body of work, Daddy’s grand Cherokee and follow follow stands out for me, hopefully along the years he develops a more commanding and distinctive voice to go with his bars and I do pray he gets the buzz his hard work deserves…..