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8 Dope SA Albums and EPs That Came Out This Month

Here are 7 dope South African albums and EPs that dropped in May and fell on our radar.

Take a look at seven South African albums and EPs that dropped in May (and a few from last month) that impressed us.

Seba Kaapstad "Thina"


The jazz band released what's one of the best albums of the year on their Mello Music Group debut. Thina, which uses jazz as its base, flirts with hip-hop, electronic, neo soul, eluding classification by genre. Lyrically, this is a project that's meant to make you feel like you're not alone in the struggle and that even though things may not be going your way, it helps to take a breather, look at the bright side and persevere on.

​Muzi "Stimela Segolide"


Muzi's latest EP tells the story of how black men and women would leave their homes to come work in the mines during the apartheid era. Families were destroyed as the parents found themselves seeing less and less of their kids as possible. Stimela Segolide tells the story in four songs, a music video and merchandise. Muzi sprinkles of South African vintage genres over his electronic production.

Lex LaFoy "22"


Lex LaFoy isn't one to get stuck on the same sound. Having started out as a poet, she became a conscious rapper favoring boom bap production in the mid-2000s. In her 2017 EP Honey Bass, she was rapping over bass-heavy electronic beats. On 22, she flirts with trap, adding her own touches to it. Lex LaFoy is one artist who's managed to frequently update her sound and image without losing her essence.

​Espiquet "Free Will"


Espiquet's latest EP (released in April) is yet another display of skill and sauce. Espiquet is a pleasure to listen to; his interpretation of beats always works, and his baritone contributes to his x-factor. Free Will, with its cloudy trap production and light-hearted subject matter, is proof of Espiquet's adeptness as a rapper and songwriter.

​BCUC "The Healing"


Another hipnotic release from BCUC, consisting of two long songs and a short one. The Healing features Femi Kuti and Saul Williams. You might wanna be ready spiritually before pressing play.

Micr.Pluto "Sonic Atlas"


Sonic Atlas consists of three rich songs—live instrumentation (for instance, the saxophone on "Metanoia") meshes with electronic production. Soul vocals and backpack raps are provided by RHEA BLEK and Raheem Kemet on the songs "Metanoia" and "Run The Block."

​M'tunez-I "iRandizLow"


M'tunez-I laments the scarcity of money on his debut EP. Sonically, the project is prevalently trap, and M'tunez-I uses auto-tune on his raps and vocals. If you ever feel like the rand keeps eluding you, M'tunez-I wants you to know that you aren't on your own.

Tweezy "God Level 3"

Tweezy's third iteration of his God Level EPs is his most diverse—alongside trademark Tweezy production (which is a combination of trap and boom bap), the producer has some kwaito-leaning heat and even traces of Afrobeats.

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Still from NPR's Tiny Desk Concert

Watch Nigerian-American Rapper Tobe Nwigwe's Tiny Desk Concert

Joined by his wife and seven-week old daughter, the Houston-based rapper brings his Southern sounds to NPR's Tiny Desk.

Houston-raised, Nigerian-American rapper Tobe Nwigwe is the latest artist to grace NPR's TIny Desk Concert Series.

The artist performed a 5-song medley, backed by a full band and four talented backup singers. The artist was also joined at the desk by his wife Fats Nwigwe and their seven-week old daughter.

READ: Tobe Nwigwe Is the Southern Rapper Making "Purpose Popular."

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Music

Meet Ami Faku, the Rising South African ‘Modern Afro Soul’ Artist Who Is Fast Becoming a Household Name

We interview the budding singer ahead of the release of her debut album.

Ami Faku is one of South Africa's fastest rising stars. Her music, which she calls "modern Afro soul," blends soul with modern pop and traditional Afro soul sensibilities. Be it on a ballad or over a house beat, the adaptable Eastern Cape-born artist maintains all her traits and soul.

In the last year, it has been near impossible to avoid Ami Faku; her singles— "Love Drunk," "Ubuhle Bakho," "Ndikhethe Wena"—have been a permanent fixture on the country's radio charts and playlists. "Into Ingawe," a single in which she's featured by Sun-El Musician is one of the most played songs on SA radio at the moment, and reached a million streams within three weeks of its release.

Ami Faku says her lyrics are honest. "My music is based on touching you in a certain way," she says, adding, "I don't have a wall, that's my brand."

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Here Are All the Samples In Burna Boy's 'African Giant'

This video breaks down all the African Giant samples & interpolations, including songs from Fela Kuti, Magic System, Naughty By Nature, D'banj and more.

Since it dropped, Burna Boy's highly-anticipated album African Giant has been making waves and getting played on constant rotation all over the place.

The 19-track album, which includes features from Angelique Kidjo, Damian Marley, Future, M.anifest, Jorja Smith, Jeremih and more, sees the buzzing Nigerian star delivering several addictive shades of his signature afro-fusion sound as he blends in influences from afrobeat, dancehall, hip-hop, RnB and more.

Listeners have also been spotting some of the many samples and interpolations used across African Giant and now, Sample Chief, a platform for African music knowledge, has put them all together in video form.

Read: Sample Chief Selects 5 of Their Favorite Samples

The samples and interpolations across African Giant include the use of Fela's "Sorrow, Tears & Blood" and Angelique Kidjo's "We WE" (in "Anybody"), Naughty By Nature's "Jamboree" (in "Collatelral Damage"), Magic System's "1er Gaou" ("On The Low"), plus many more from the likes of Stereoman, Ududo Nnobi, Blak Ryno, and D'banj.

Check them all out below courtesy of Sample Chief.

Keep up with Sample Chief by following them on Twitter and Instagram.

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Arts + Culture
Photo by Stephen Tayo.

First Look: Peter Johnson of P96 Reveals His Custom Air Max 200s Co-Created with Nike

The Nigerian-born entrepreneur was one of 28 creators to design a sneaker for Nike's NYC by You project.

Peter Johnson, the mind behind the streetwear and lifestyle brand Project 96 (P96), was one of 28 creators to design a sneaker inspired by their story for Nike's NYC by You project.

"I was offered the opportunity to create my own version of the new Nike Air Max 200s," he says.

Johnson, 22, is a Lagos-born entrepreneur based in Queens, NY. Through his work with P96 and FulfillYourProject, Johnson consistently draws inspiration from his culture and his passion to uplift humanity. His design, entitled Balanced Diet, is inspired by his awareness of authenticity, as well as how he approaches his dual identity of being Nigerian and American.

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