Audio

Sun-El Musician’s ‘Africa To The World’ Album Knocks Hard

Sun-El Musician's debut album is potent.

South African producer Sun-El Musician scored one of the biggest hits last year. "Akanamali," which featured the singer Samthing Soweto, was a permanent fixture on radio, shebeens, living rooms and clubs alike.

On his recently released full-length album, Africa to the World, Sun-El proves he's capable of more.


The album's second single "Bamthathile" takes off where "Akanamali" left off. While the latter was chronicling dating while broke, on "Bamthathile," the singer Mlindo The Vocalist, mourns a lover who was taken away from him by another man. These things do happen, you see, and having a song to cry to helps.

But it's not all blues on Africa to the World. The opening song, "With You," features lush vocals by Desiree Dawson. Over a beat that sounds like a summer breeze, she sings of a special somebody whom she "see the sun when I look at you."

She sings on the second verse:

"I feel confused as my feelings show/ I know now, all the past I gotta let it go/ 'cause we here and it's clear that we belong this way/ so I'll just take your hand and kiss your lips again"

The album is packed with mid-tempo vocal house songs that excel in marrying vocals and beats seamlessly. Among the aforementioned songs are "Sengimoja," "Life We Live," "No Stopping Us," "Goodbye," "Umalukatane," "Sonini" and "Ntaba Ezikude," which are all near perfect vocal house tunes.

The instrumental songs "Random" and "The Wave" are strategically placed towards the end, just before "Bamthathile," as if to prepare you for the story of disappointment.

Sun-El managed to create different moods both sonically and through the vocalists he featured. And he managed to blend electro with South African house to create an album that can be enjoyed by locals and has great potential to be exported, which, according to the title, is one of his biggest goals.

Listen to Africa To The World below, and download it here.

Interview
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Interview: 808x On Crafting Different Sounds For the Diverse Innanetwav Roster

808x, the in-house producer for South Africa's popular hip-hop collective/label Innanetwav, breaks down his working process with artists and the importance of energy.

Reflecting on the early days of Cash Money Records during a conversation with legendary New Orleans producer Mannie Fresh earlier this year, Lil Wayne said:

"When we started, record labels had one producer for the whole record label. Meaning that Mannie Fresh produced every song on every album, from the intro to the artist."

Some labels, groups and collectives still observe that tradition. It, however, takes a producer with such versatility they could be mistaken to be different personalities altogether.

Joburg-based producer 808x is a great example of that type of producer. Being the in-house producer and engineer for one of the country's most versatile collectives and contemporary hip-hop labels, Innanetwav, 808x has to craft beats that slice through the spectrum of genres with inimitable fluidity and creativity.

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