In 2020 Hip Hop is synonymous to misogyny, violence,crime and every vile thing a man can conceive. The pressure to move units, battle for spotlight in the dwindling industry have sent many great artists to the edge, some have lost themselves in their quests to evolve.
I always receive the news that an artist that rose to prominence through social commentary worryingly. Every release in my limited view carries two important aspect the need to solidify your artistic image and the economic spin offs that come with the work. The latter more often than not takes precedence.
Long story shot. I got my hands on Ndlulamthi’s Substance EP. The day I received the work I was like a kid with a new toy.
Press play then a mellow beat filled the room and Ndlulamthi came in with his lazy and hypnotic flow passing love to his homies who due to the township snares find themselves in positions they probably could not foretell. The Joint is called amajita.3:02 minutes later he was exploring dreams highlighting the plight of ghetto kids who between following their passion and gunning for the outdated job security concept chose The latter cause it’s illegal to dream ekasi. The vocalist(I tried getting the name of untanga) comes in and lift the joint up nicely great synergy.
Erenkeni is the song that should be pumping in every Taxi rank its amazing how he put himself in the shoes of a Taxi driver, his relationship with law enforcement and passengers. Real life scenarios laced throughout the song. On The song that follows he beautifully merges the messages he has beeen receiving from his fans through social media. The song is called Nakanjani Star and I’m predicting that will be his fans favorite cause it has sentimental value. The song says we are family and your messages are taken seriously.
Then on Too Attached he speaks relationships and their ups and downs. While uchuku LweFamily is a straight forward title he addresses just that. The 7th and last song of the EP emphasizes on what the project is about. A voice of the people, social commentary and reflections of the everyday man.
With this project Ndlulamthi did not aim to win over new fans. He is simply speaking to his core audience. What sets him apart is how he incorporates the Cape Ghetto slang without sounding gangster or someone who is trying to fit in. It’s a solid effort from a lyricist that knows what he represents. Go out and cop the project while we await a full-length album.
Review by: Yahkeem Mavulakuvaliwe.
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