SIMI’S – SIMISOLA (ALBUM REVIEW)
Simi’s sophomore album is a 54 minutes soulful poetry with love and rhythm. Simi, who is one of the few who writes their own songs and probably the most lyrical female artist in Nigeria released her self-titled studio album on September 8, 2017 under X3M Music record label. The album was graced with solid production from Oscar, SeyiKeyz, Sess, and Vtek. The album received a lot of commercial success debuting at number five on the Billboard World Albums chart upon its release. It also received positive remarks from music critics and she is already being called the most talented female singer in Nigeria. The big question on everyone’s mind is; will the Nigerian soulful pop singer live up to the hype?
On ‘Remind me’ she opens up to everything there is to life. There couldn’t have been any better opener as she seeks for redemption over her vulnerabilities. Her vocal exercise on the keys reminds you how lovely her voice is. The memorable melody will make it impossible to stop humming the rhythm in your mind. This is just a beautiful song on its own merits.
‘Joromi’ which was one of the single released earlier is the flagship of the album. It is influenced by Victor Uwaifo’s (a jùjú musician icon) 90s classic ‘Joromi’. She reintroduced it in her notorious style of seeking for love. The catchy chorus definitely influences you to sing along. This is definitely the people’s favourite.
Simi went back to her Yoruba root and switched it up to give you some ‘fuji’ music on ‘Aimasiko’. She pushes the agenda of striving to succeed and having faith in God. The record has samples from Chief Ebenezer Obey who is also a jùjú musician. The grooving drums will keep you dancing.
What’s a heart without a beat? Simi displays her lyricism as she stresses that her lover completes her on ‘Complete me’. The soothing voice backed with kicking drums just thrills you.
Simi makes you emotional on ‘gone for good’ as it is much relatable. The acoustic sound is graced with her crisp vocals.
‘Original Baby’ brings harmony to the piece. It has a reggae feel and also rich in lyrics. Her vocals was a bit lacking on the high notes though. You would expect more on the Oscar produced reggae style beat. Nevertheless, it’s a decent track.
You can literally feel the drums on the danceable and melodic ‘One Kain’. The slow jam is definitely a favourite.
‘Take me back’ houses the only feature, no other than her often collaborator Adekunle Gold. It is an emotional but dance-worthy track. Their verses are cohesive and very satisfying.
‘O Wa N’bę’ another danceable track gets you moving right off the bat. This is more like a party record. You just have to love that Yoruba feel.
‘Smile for Me’ which is her first single off the album is a mushy and lyrically track that makes you want to fall in love. It is evidenced that love is Simi’s stronghold and her most important tool.
‘Angelina’ is another reggae sound which she delivers a decent harmonic hook and some pretty decent verses. She plays the underdog and a victim in a relationship as she does so well, making you root for her. The adlib ‘oh no’ is probably the most catchy phrase on the track.
“HipHop Hurray” is a jubilating singalong song. Although it’s a bouncing beat Simi remains in her comfort zone of singing in lower notes.
It is without doubt that she created a masterpiece that boast by itself her prowess as a lyricist and a vocalist. But this isn’t the project that makes her number one in the continent by no stretch. Seeing that the album struggles to get the magnitude and numbers of hit songs to take her career to that level. Nevertheless, it did push her to another level and increased her buzz. Although it encompasses songs that has potential, sadly it is unlikely to flourish as it is alternative music and not the currently thriving ‘afrobeats’ genre.
The album generally has a mushy feel but also has some upside high tuned turn up to it. It is clear that she didn’t have a hit seeking agenda which set her off at the right path to showcase her talent comfortably as is. At this point Simi is one of Africa’s most promising artist and this album definitely proves that. What everyone can agree on is that Simisola definitely stands out from the rest.