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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.

Interview
Photo: Benoit Peverelli

Interview: Oumou Sangaré Proves Why She's the Songbird of Wassoulou

We caught up with the Malian singer to talk about her new Acoustic album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

When Oumou Sangaré tells me freedom is at her core, I am not surprised. If you listen to her discography, you'll be hard-pressed to find a song that doesn't center or in some way touch on women's rights or child abuse. The Grammy award-winning Malian singer has spent a significant part of her career using her voice to fight for the rights of women across Africa and the world, a testimony to this is her naming her debut studio album Moussolou, meaning Woman. The album, a pure masterpiece that solidified Oumou's place amongst the greats and earned her the name 'Songbird of Wassoulou,' was a commercial success selling over 250,000 records in Africa and would in turn go on to inspire other singers across the world.

On her latest body of work Acoustic, a reworking of her critically acclaimed 2017 album Mogoya, Oumou Sangaré proves how and why she earned her accolades. The entirety of the 11-track album was recorded within two days in the Midi Live studio in Villetaneuse in 'live' conditions—with no amplification, no retakes or overdubs, no headphones. Throughout the album, using her powerful and raw voice that has come to define feminism in Africa and shaped opinions across the continent, Oumou boldly addresses themes like loss, polygamy and female circumcision.

We caught up with the Malian singer at the studio she is staying while in quarantine to talk about her new album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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