A strong review of Naija albums
LABEL: Mo’ Hits Records
Year of release: 2010
Sidney Onoriode Esiri aka Dr Sid has always waited his turn – @ Home, having to fill the big shoes of his dad, the legendary actor Justus Esiri (Village Headmaster); @ Trybe Records, waiting 3 years before he could drop a hot verse on 1 of 9ja’s Historic Hip-hop tracks – ‘Oya’ (U can download this track below to try and guess which are his bars) as a member of Da Trybe (2Shotz, DEL, Sasha & Timi); @ Mo’ Hits, waiting like Scottie Pippen to grab the offensive from his fellow label mates.
Trybes Men - Oya.mp3 (4.9 MiB, 1,138 hits)
During the wait, he seemed to have used his surgical skills to revamp his music and style from rapper to pop-rap singer (???). We 1st heard him sing on Mo’ Hits ‘Ten Ten’ and we thot hey that sounds fresh. This was the Turning Point for the good Doctor.
With an anthem-like chorus, “When This Song Comes On” opens up proceedings. Over an upbeat tempo from Don ‘Na Who Do This Beat’ Jazzy, Dr Sid attempts to get your feet moving by having a Will.I.Am moment with little lyrical prowess & energy. “Over The Moon” which features label-mate K-Switch comes in immediately on cue with a more creative and smoother approach and actually jumpstarts the album for me. The catchy hook and lines get me singing along with them ‘Ah ah ah ah I feel like I’m flyin over the moon’. Hope they release this as a single.
Dr Sid proves he can be Mo’ Hits’ point-man as he drops the massive hit single “Something About U” The verse 2 even though filled with elementary rhymes is delivered brilliantly – ‘oya oyoyo/dadddy mummy oyoyo/our children go say oyoyo/we go get money full the gorodo/we go start to dey live like olowo/we go buy big house for sokoto/our children no go be olodo/no cheating and no ojoro’
“Winchi Winchi” has a distinct Euro Pop feel. With a firm grasp on Don Jazzy’s swelling synths, Wande Coal sounds so natural (note: natural not naked) over the production, to the point where it is easy to forget that this isn’t the Blackest one’s track. Dr Sid does his pop-ish rap on this one but it’s really WC that saves the track. The Eastern Clubs are crazy about this next song – “Pop Something”. It provides the braggadocios Heavy Spenders with a club anthem to keep blowing money fast, continue largesse & enjoyment with some more cork-popping, the record is really infectious. Assisted by D’Banj, Dr Sid incorporates Pop, Hip-hop, Alanta, Up-tempo High Life & Electronic into one cut. This song will be a mainstay in clubs for many years to come. The video didn’t do the song justice at all and I was really disappointed.
Dr Sid returns to rapping on “Ba Mi Jo” with a host of high-profile emcees (Ikechukwu, MI & eLDee). Sid disappoints when the time comes to show and prove as he plays patient rather than surgeon to all the guests. All 3 guests hit new levels of crazy with their approach and rhymes. “Baby”, my fav cut off the turn has a lot of genre mashed up that I can’t really point to specifics. The Auto-tune on this is executed perfectly & anchors the album into precise cinematic terrain.
The Xtasy sampled and O Wan Be influenced “E Je Ka Lo” is one of the tracks that you either love so much or despise so dearly. D’Banj in typical style does his stuttering koko talk ‘just shake shake yo yansh/like it’s all for cash’. The mediocre “Pillow” leaves us scratching our heads as it takes the energy level of album down.
Don Jazzy then takes a well deserved rest and allows Silva Stone to step in and produce the remix to “Something about You” that gets laced with high intensity, thumping bass lines and techno synths. UK’s Sway & Dotstar drop verses on the remix to “Winchi Winchi” which sounds like blended Euro Garage with a Hip-Hop edge.
Turning Point’s production performs excellently. Maintaining his legacy as one of 9ja’s best producers, Don Jazzy laces the album with well-crafted, different, club-ready, Euro-sounding beats on 10 of the tracks. Silva Stone doesn’t do any different on his 1 produced track.
After hearing Dr Sid rap on a few on of the songs, I’m actually glad that he changed his style because he sounded rather pedestrian rapping but fresh when pop-rap singing. While Dr Sid may not have the voice to bring home the Grammys for Best RnB act, he does deliver a well rounded album that delves a lot into the pop genre that does its best to make you move with every cut played.
The album ventures away from the Hip Hop and Rap influences that made the Doctor known. Though the songs are contagious and has Pop written all over it, the amped up Euro influenced music often overwhelms his ‘still training’ vocals.
Outstanding Tracks: Baby, Over The Moon, Something About U, Pop Something
Disappointing Tracks: Pillow, When This Song Comes On
VOCAL DROPS Rating System
OPINION (Personal): 6/10
SKIP FACTOR: 6/10
THE VERDICT: 6.3/10
As 9ja artists look for ways to crossover to International music circles, the success formula of Global Dominance of other acts (Justin Bieber, Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga, Akon) seem to be the Pop Genre. Turning Point follows suit.
From the very first second, the album is determined to get people on the dance floor and is more than capable of captivating the audience’s ears. People @ the clubs and on radio shows will keep requesting these songs so we do expect the album to do well. However Turning Point is as good as it is fraught with faults. The album’s main artist struggles through some of the songs and has to rely heavily on the guest appearances which take the shine away from him and he still lacks the vocals.
The reinvention of Dr Sid is the stuff of which stars are made. For many listeners, the grooves should be enough to keep this CD in rotation, but for a few others, they will be left scratching their heads at Dr Sid’s 3 years of studio creation because while the faults may seem few, they prove too significant to ignore.
BUY this album & SUPPORT THE ARTIST