Reminisce doesn’t take chances one bit on this Project. He takes no prisoners. He conforms to no standards. He carves a path for himself in an already crowded, stratified music space. What daemon tendencies!
Tinted hair, lazy eyes, street-smart phrases and a modified variant of the art, Remilekun Khalid Safaru is major on here. He is the shxt for many reasons on Baba Hafusa, especially with “Tesojue”, “Skilashi” and “Saida”, some of the majors. He actually dared to swim against the tides. No, he isn’t your ordinary guy on this business, he is in fact not human altogether. He is on some street-influenced, pseudomaniac, hyper aptitude. No truer words.
Jospo deserves all the accolade there is for the lustrous “Tesojue”. Reminisce steps up to and delivers on this, something so good you can’t even sleep upon. Yes, Tesojue is that much a hit, perhaps top 3 biggest cuts on BH even.
Since dropping, the album has gone tops on iTunes and major distribution outlets around the land. And it isn’t surprising the rapper’s flirtation with street lingo and African instruments, considering his inclinations. His art is ace and redefining how he combines hip hop with unlikely instrumentations in the Afro Pop fusion and local drum elements.
On “Kososhi”, ChopStix comes through and reminds us anew how there are only a few better beat makers than him around here today. Dude went hard; he was absolute, with an eagle eye-type precision. The closing parts of the song have an intangible, ethereal appeal to it; where the keyboard and guitar sounds come together and dissolve into the pith of the song. In truth, what ChopStix does here is more intuitional than one can even begin to explain.
“Skilashii” is another high point of any conversation as it relates to BH, in part because it is radio-fitting and on the other hand because its production is meanness. Sarz is consummate, making an easy hit off what is otherwise a nearly unattractive song title and lyrical composition. What has Skilashii as a phrase to do with music in any way? Nothing. But with Sarz you can rest assured, because he is a sage in the scheme of things. Think back to how he extirpated on eLDee’s “Higher” and “Wash Wash” (and the entire ‘Undeniable’ album actually) so that you can put the man’s abilities into true perspective. Another awesome part of Skilashi will be the chorus, smooth and relatable, with a balanced entire composition. The song and its entire structuring owe it all to Sarz, and only slightly to Mr. Remi Safaru given he isn’t exactly lyrical on here.
“Gbamilago” is classy for today’s Afro Pop consumer. DTunes is sick for many reasons, this one a bleeping reaffirmation. Sean Tizzle hops in the building, creates a solid base with his chorus and the rest is history.
“Grind” is upbeat. Sojay’s vocals are purity, much of the song bringing to mind the essence of relentlessness and hope. Tyronne should be inducted into the league of some of the finer beat makers of this day.
“I Need A Girl” is the clichéd tale of lust, sex and all that stuff. Marked by rawness and ghetto-Xrated lingo, it paints here an image of the typical Lagos hooker, placed on some mid tempo, rhythmic podium.
“Saida” is Remi’s best shot at Afro Pop and, heck, he dispatches the beats in around 3:15 seconds. The background clinking bottles and pin drop sounds are insane, catchy and nicely laced on the man’s singing, spinning the joint into a swelling hit that the pubs and social gatherings can use. The sex allusions on this are masked with figurative analogies. Cool stuff.
“Local Rappers” is average; there’s almost only Remi present on a supposed three-man mission. Average Phyno. Average Olamide. And that’s about it. Quite sad because knowing who Remi is today; you hear of a collab that has him, Ola and Phyno and you start to form mental pictures of a hit in the shape of “GhostMode” or something bigger. But that’s not what this is. There’s a lack of real blend on this, no real exertion, no particular grittiness nor depth from Ola and Phyno. Still it earns all that acclaim today given it’s got the most plugging off the BH project. Otherwise nothing more, except of course the fact of the song starting what, today, is a revolution of sorts. And then the fact of the guys interjecting real nice on the chorus.
On “Olomoge” the mood is cheery. Khalid Safaru really cannot steer clear of lewd language, as it appears it is the one thing his consumers embrace the most. Following that, we don’t know how to take this number that is supposed to be him wooing a love interest of his given he is too lascivious, saying nothing tangible about her, her virtues and why she should take him for real.
“Alagbara” is positive and largely shows the man and his supplications to the heavens. “Otiya” continues where Alagbara stops, getting us into a faster-paced, groovy, feel good mood. No particular message here, just something random we can use on the dance floors.
Ice Prince and Remi go back and forth on “Busayo”. Okay stuff. Lyrically it is uninspiring, largely. Hackneyed talks of same girl Reminisce has raved about all Baba Hafusa long. Almost off-putting at this point, the subject matter. Frankly.
Vector drops by on “Nothing” and leaves not a thing on the astonishing Sojay chorus. Remi takes his erstwhile adversary out all too easily on this.
“Let It Be Known” that we danced a lot more on this project than we thought the Alaga or any other rapper around here today could make us do.
The album is cross-hatched by mostly blurry, lewd shadings of sex and the female behind. Other times, it is outright X-rated lyricism what we have on lots of songs in this.
The music; after all said, is a lengthy, filmic display of Rap-Afro Pop fusions. Genre-bursting, it is fresh on the scene vis-à-vis what is obtainable today.
Overall, we can’t say much about Reminisce’s lyrical inputs on the work. The album doesn’t exactly project itself in terms of unmatched rhyming and figures of speech. But it’s understandable. Empathy ensures we don’t censure the man heavy, given how he started a Local Rapper movement and his need to back it up with substance. This means he is extra careful on here, given that the stakes are higher, and the entire community is waiting to critique. He is careful not to implode. He is daring enough to juxtapose unrelated genres and sound patterns; hence his painstakingness not to stretch too far and lose out on both the cosmopolitan-indigenous divides. This means we understand his street flow and overt dumbing down, but doesn’t in any way say we support it.
Reminisce is lazy given he does a 16-track effort here with pretty much same subject matters on repeat, something that’s finna put us on snooze mode after a few replays. Instead of touch on cracking themes in a year that’s been heavy on xenophobia and democracy and national politics, Baba Hafusa entices us with a juicy album art but ends up reeling off his sexual exploits and raunchy fantasies on nearly every cut off this work. There are no strong, touching tales of his journey through fatherhood as we expect. We don’t hear nothing on the struggles he surmounted as a young man, in the process of becoming the proud father, and in sealing major brand deals today. Mr. Khalid Safaru is too carried away all he really does here is rant about the women and make music for the night crawlers, the binge circles and the street smarts, a bit too gangsta for an ambassador figure in his mould.
Nonetheless, in spite of Baba Hafusa not being the transition we expect of Safaru, there are noticeable improvements here and there. Plus this new blend of his art and sound has a greater tendency to get his wallet and bank statements heavy, stone-heavy maybe. So who are we to hate on the man and his craft? And then again what is the best of arts without consumption?
Go out there and get a copy for you and yours and tell us what you feel of the entire album.