Over 25 albums were released by Nigerian artistes last year, and it was a great year for Nigerian music, however, a few of the projects did not live up to expectations, and I have outlined 5 albums which I think could have been better, check it out below.
Samklef – Sound Of Music
It is very hard to believe that Samklef is the same producer who was responsible for the production on hit songs like Pakurunmo by Wizkid, Jonzing World by D’Prince, Molowo Noni Featuring Ice Prince and Stupid Love by Olamide, because it’s been quite a while his name has been synonymous to the word “Hit”, and his album Sound Of Music which was released last year was perhaps the best indication of how far down the pecking order he has fallen as far as hit-making Nigerian producers go. The album which featured the likes of Lil Kesh, Pepenazi, Kay Switch , Falz ,Small Doctor and Mr 2 Kay was lack-lustre, underwhelming and uninspiring, little wonder nobody is talking about it less than 5 months after its release. I rate and respect Samklef as a producer and I think he has what it takes to return to his hitmaking form, but Sound Of Music was simply not a solid outing.
Runtown – Ghetto University
While a lot of people think Ghetto University by Runtown is a great album, I beg to disagree and my album review for the project is a more detailed explanation of why I think the album should have been better and I still stand by that assertion. Hit songs like Domot, Successful, Baby Answer , The Latest and the Timaya assisted The Matter are all hit songs which were left out of the album in favour of regular album fillers like Talk For Me, Money Bag, Let me Love You and Lagos To Kampala all of which I feel are weaker than the aforementioned ones. Had another artiste put out this album, it would have received a pass mark from me, but knowing Runtown and his musical ability, I think this album fell way below the lofty expectations which I had for him. This final output of the album was hurt greatly by lack of A&R direction and is a lesson to Nigerian artistes who do not take that branch of music production serious, negligence in that department can ruin the final output of a body of work by a talented act
Joe El – Timeless
You would think the fact that Kennis music has only one artiste on their rooster would mean that they will throw their entire resources behind that artiste and focus all their attention on creating a monumental project, but that was not the case for Joe El, the sole artiste currently signed to what was once an urban music powerhouse when he released his debut album Timeless in July 2015. Once touted as a successor to the great Tuface Idibia, nowadays the only thing Joe El has in common with Tubaba is the bald head. Timeless was simply a weak project which did not have any impact whatsoever on Nigerian pop music and does not posess any laudable musical qualities. Phyno, Oritse Femi, Terry G, Iyanya and J.Martins appearance on the album did not save it from faltering instead it exposed the fact that Joe El simply does not have any chemistry with those guys. The only respite on the album came in the form of the Tuface assisted single Hold On, which is the only song out of the 19 on the album that has any semblance of a hit song. I can’t tell what the future holds for the Joe El/Kennis marriage, but what I can tell you is that Timeless was a disappointing showcase of the young mans talents.
Naeto C – Festival
Releasing two albums in one calendar year may have been the factor which contributed to Naeto C delivering two polarizing projects, one of which is one of the best rap albums of the year and the other which was well….. one of the most disappointing. Festival was simply not up to the standard of a Super C record and just might be his weakest body of work till date. The album was crafted and centred around the current pop/mainstream sound unlike Day 1 which was tailored for the rap heads, and at the end of the day, the verdict was clear, Naeto is more of straight-up rapper who functions best when he is making a traditional rap project. While there are a handful of listenable songs on the project, Festival just doesn’t cut it and I always said Naeto is one of those artistes whose fans can decided which of his albums was the worst-or best- due to the quality of his music and how divisive his discography is, but he just saved them a lingering debate by releasing what most will unanimously agree is his worst project till date.
Iyanya – Applaudise
Compared to his critically acclaimed sophomore album Desire, Applaudise by Iyanya is-for loss of words- nothing to write home about. Upon listening to this project, I realised that the only good songs on the album are actually the singles which were released to promote the album and the rest of the songs are essentially album fillers. Out of 20 songs, only Gift Featuring Don Jazzy, Applaudise, Baby Daddy, Okamfo Featuring Lil Kesh, and Nakupenda featuring Diamond Platnumz show any form of innovation, most the rest are generic afro-pop songs not befitting of an artiste of Iyanyas calibre. Perhaps this was because D-Tunes who produced Desire in its entirety had no sonic input on this album leaving the project to DJ Coublon, Tekno, Selebobo, TY Mix, Blaq Jersey and Mr Chiido who all put in great shifts but simply could not recreate the magic Iyanya and D-Tunes made together. That is why I am keen on their new joint album aptly titled Unfinished Bizness which was announced in December and is set to drop sometime in the year. If their new singles Sukunma and Nothing Mega are anything to go by, they are going to create a much better and stronger project which would be much more representative of Iyanya and his musical calibre.