Oyinda’s Dark & Striking 3-Track Introduction

London-raised Nigerian singer/songwriter/producer Oyinda introduces herself with three dark and striking tracks.

Born to Nigerian parents and raised in London, singer/songwriter/producer Oyinda recently graduated from the esteemed Berklee College of Music. Since then, the unsigned 22-year-old has released three striking tracks. The latest, "The Devil's Gonna Keep Me," a dark sky of dour piano presses, soaring strings and thick drums, elegantly shows Oyinda's love of storytelling, impressively combining the thematic complexity of fiction and concision of poetry. Seemingly a portrait of emotional reckoning and eternal doom, the song is frightening, yet also thrilling. Like a great dramatist, Oyinda wisely avoids telling her listener everything, opting rather for interpretation. While it's not exactly clear why her character is in the devil's grasp and why "the time has now come," one almost helplessly feels for this tragic heroine.

The grimness of "The Devil's Gonna Keep Me" isn't in Oyinda's other singles, "Rush of You" and "What Still Remains," but they're still intriguing. The former, a darkened maze of rapid drums and screeching guitars, ends with Oyinda repeating "I'll do all I can," the poignant height of a song that sensitively and passionately deals with relationships. "What Still Remains," similarly, is a drum-stuttered, string-guided tour of lost love's remnants that is more elegy than tragedy, its speaker reflecting on rather than succumbing to past heartache.

In recent months Oyinda has introduced herself as a musician who gives sound to life's inherent darkness while eking out light in the process. Listen to her three singles below. "The Devil's Gonna Keep Me" is available now on iTunes and for streaming on Spotify. Follow Oyinda on facebook and twitter and catch her during CMJ in NYC at the Paper Box in Brooklyn, Thursday, October 23rd (find out the details here).


Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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