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The Best Albums Of April

Another month gone, another monthly round up article to highlight some of the best moments musically. April being the first month of Q2 has seen a drastic improvement in the quality of music, in contrast with the first quarter of the year. In this article, we highlight the 5 best albums that dropped in no exact order.

1. RnB — Ruger x BNXN

It came as a huge surprise to many, when the duo announced a collaboration and an even bigger one—when said song collaboration resulted in an LP. It’s something that’s sparsely done in the industry; 2 popstars of potent status combining to deliver an EP. Not to talk of popstars that used to be at loggerheads with one another and have some level of beef, amongst themselves and their fanbase.

Ruger and Benson are both extremely talented artists, and so the hype that the project generated wasn’t solely as a result of the fact that two heavyweights were combining on a project. It was also because, they had incredible contrasting talents that had huge potential, if great synergy was attained. RnB doesn’t exactly have either of them at their respective bests that we’ve seen them on their solo projects, but it does pack enough punch and mainstream resonance to generate a moment for them and also produce a potential hit record in POE.

2. Love & Hustle – UAX

UAX’s debut project is an immsersive, cohesive experience of Afro-RnB records that would most definitely tug at your heart strings and are also effective mid tempo bops. Evergreen has that infectious, groovy hips gyrating bounce, with UAX gliding over the beat with the smoothness of an experienced surfer over turbulent waves.

Nothing Compares is packed with more visceral percussion and shakers that give it a grounded, cultural feel. Despite being an RnB project, there is enough topical range on this LP. Lagos 2 Crazy has a trap bounce and the sort of delivery swagger that is synonymous with musings about the frenzy of the night life, Koselomi is the sweet intersection of Afrobeats, electronic music and RnB with flowery confessions of love.

3. Jiggy Forever – Young Jonn

Veteran producer-turned-popstar, Young Jonn finally released his debut LP, Jiggy Forever after a run of impressive singles, that resulted in a streak of hit songs and memorable guest performances on songs. Anticipation was high, after Jonn announced the album was on its way, mostly due to the fact that he had delivered 2 EP’s that delivered on good, simple but resonant Afro-Pop music.

That was the same mission on Jiggy Forever and one can easily glean that from the approach but it doesn’t quite come off excellently. For one, an LP is significantly longer than an EP so there is need for much more dynamism and range from the artist, to prevent the album from sounding monotonous. In one too many parts, the album sounded like one song on loop as a result of lack of a lack dynamism, whilst it does excel in other parts.

4. The Messenger – Wizard Chan

It’s one thing for albums to be a wholesome, cohesive experience that makes you feel a wide range of emotions. It’s another thing for it to build a sonic atmosphere, so unique that you can not only envision the soundscape in your mind but can almost taste the music on your tongue. These are the levels that Wizard Chan attains on his debut EP and it’s easily one of the best projects out this year.

Asides the cultural, hiplife atmosphere that is unique to the EP, Wizard is also intentional about taking us on a journey, both lyrically and sonically. Higher Powers ft. Boma Nime is infused with Kalabari chants that give it a pristine, spiritual feel. Pray Hard ft. Dino Zee is a trap record, with an emphatic delivery from the guest artist that still manages to fit into the traditional sonics of the LP. It’s just great fusion music all round.

5. R2 Sept 12 – Bella Shmurda

Mohbad’s tragic death was one of the biggest shockwaves that rocked the industry last year and sent ripples all through, with the effects being felt. Bella Shmurda was one of Mohbad’s closest friend and henceforth, felt the pain in even more excruciating ways than most people did. Asides constantly clamoring for justice on social media and supporting his friend’s family, Bella has also resorted to making an EP that not only eulogizes his friend, but also serves as a medium of expression for his immense pain.

It is good music and easily one of Bella’s best project in a while, maybe because of how personal it is. Drawing influences from various genres like Afropop, Konto, Afro-Swing and street-pop—Bella crafts an experience that excels, both as a homage to a fallen comrade and enjoyable music in itself that doesn’t crash under the weight of its topical narrative.

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