Been A Minute
Its been a while I wrote one of these, but I guess the urge to fully express my thoughts outweighed my procrastination. If I was God, I’d still be on day 3 of creation. Yep, I’m that lazy.
Back to the matter. The Live Report which is less than a month old has made it’s way to the Classic Status of the Nigerian Rap joints. It’s a project keeps seated for 24 minutes away from reality so you can soak in every element of it – Lyrics, concept, storytelling, beats, hooks, and melody – and then another hour to reflect on your life, as it is all relative.
I’ll be amiss if I don’t talk about my journey in the consumption of hip-hop and I was always one of those who felt Nigerian rappers were not worth a listen because of the pAnAcHe of the lyrical Idris Abdulkareem back in the day. I won’t lie, I enjoyed some of his hit songs, but then his incredible tongue rolling skill put me off. As a kid coming off tracks by B.I.G, Pac, JayZ, Nas, Busta Rhymes, Eminem, Wu-Tang, etc, the quality was just missing. Enter the Double-OG set, Modo, Ruggedman, Dark Poet, Gino, Trybesmen, etc. I must say, Ruggedman added something close to the hip-hop while most of the Double OGs stuck to hardcore, at that age, I wasn’t quite interested in that genre. Shoutout to Gino for No Be God? that song somewhat changed my perception, and I became more open-minded to our artistes and their art.
Then enters M.I Abaga in 2005/2006 with Crowd Mentality only for him to disappear and that time, I never got a name. Then Safe with Djinee was all up on every radio station, then I got a name, but I never knew it was the same person until I was jamming his album and then Crowd Mentality came on. Like it or Not, Talk About It is one of the greatest albums in Nigeria, until 12 years later, The Live Report.
Setting The Tone
It’s been 12 years since Talk About It, and the industry is filled with incredible lyricists and writers; these lots have studied the OGs and the Double OGs, successfully blended it together to create the future of the industry. Let’s not even talk about this young producers with out of the box production with Bass so dirty LAWNA can’t get them sanitised. In all of this, the OG came back and showed us why he is the incredible emcee.
Tone of the Conversation immediately pulls you into an atmosphere where you have to defend your actions to your boss, where the wrong answer comes with dire consequences. Every line almost equalled a bar and it covered the entire legacy the Short black boy from Jos has put in place since his first album. Let’s not forget A-Q gnawing on the beat like it was a daily workout routine.
As a lyricist, after the first track, you begin to re-evaluate your skill. You begin to question your decision to become a rapper and wonder how/when you will ever reach this level of lyricism. If you ask me, this track sits on the top 20 rap joints out of Nigeria.
The Live Report was a current affairs track with much to say about the conspiracy theories surrounding the ongoing pandemic. All I can say is, this track serves as a documentation of these times and will be useful for someone in the future carrying out research on the 2020 Pandemic.
The subject matter of Jesus Said Use Your Head is as old as time itself, yet, the debate carries on. It touches how prophets have become the Pharisees and their congregations are the ones that continue to defend, which ultimately foster their continuous lifestyle. When its all said and done, only the people can put an end to these false prophets. A word is enough for the wise.
Clap for Yourself was a bit of comic relief from all the preceding seriousness, yet, it touched on a serious issue in today’s social media age. People living off lies, spending all the energy to living a fake life just to get tweets and post engagements, the baby boy and baby girl life. When the cock comes to roost, they can’t afford the bills incurred. Empty Barrels make the loudest noise. Just apply that energy into creating a revenue system for yourself. Who knows 5 to 10years down the line, you can oppress the gram with your acquired wealth.
The last two tracks, When I’m Gone and Braveheart touched on death and life respectively. In this life, no one will get out alive. We are all going to die, so why not show the love now? Why wait until they’re dead?
Braveheart teaches you how to live. No one owes you anything, and stop being entitled. Mind Your Business, and if it happens that you are in a position to help, please do.
It’s a great project and it really rekindled my love for M.I because his recent projects have him dropping the ball, and he just shot me back to 2008 and how I carried Talk About It on my head like it was a core-course. The man is now independent and can now churn out content at will, and this project has raised the bar for what is now a normal rap song in Nigeria.
Either you go hard or you go home.