Album: Burna Boy’s Twice as Tall – One Take Review by Ogbeni Shinzu [A Must Read]
Okay chill, before you bite my ears off, I know there’s many who’d say why would you listen to a song once and immediately have a take on it. If you ask me I think there’s no crime in that. There’s something called first impressions, now while that impression can change with time, it doesn’t mean you didn’t feel what you felt as at the time that impression was borne.
It’s just like falling in love and thinking “hey I found the most beautiful girl in the world” and every lyric of the song ‘Perfect‘ by Ed Sheeran perfectly describes her, but then six months after and a load of irreconcilable differences the lyrics to Ed Sheeran ‘Save myself‘ is now a better description of what you feel and then finally 12 months after “Happier and New Man” is exactly how you feel cos now you kind of miss her and think maybe, just maybe y’all should have held on a little longer.
Having painstakingly explained the idea behind first listen reviews to you anybody who steps to me with the “why would you make a review just based on first listen” energy will definitely suffer for 600 years. That said please allow me to dive into this sonic bowl of Egusi soup, my swallow don dey cold I really just hope at the end of the day it’s not all Cake.
Going through the credits and finding Rexxie with production credits on the Album, excites me cause this is an album everyone already says would win a Grammy. Considering Rexxie’s root (Shomolu) which is same as mine, it makes me really proud that a Shomolu boy could very well receive a Grammy certificate.
1. Level up/Twice as Tall ft Youssou N’Dour
Sampling the Soundtrack to the film Journey to the Centre of the Earth (1959). Burna echoes pretty much the same thoughts as what’s said on the sample on his first and second verse. Basically, it’s a song that talks about the trials of failure, trying to get something and failing at it over and over again and even contemplating giving up. Somehow I think the first verse is referring to Burna before the fame, or Burna before the Atlantic records deal probably that 2015 – 2016 period. On the second verse, it’s clearer what he’s talking about as he clearly mentions losing out on the Grammies had him feeling “sick as fuck” Diddy closes out the song with a narration I first thought was a rap verse😂.
2. Alarm clock.
I don’t know why Diddy really has to talk in this songs like can he shut up already I just want to listen to Burna🤦. The song starts and I begin to wonder if I’m back listening to Beyonce’s Black is King, I no go lie this song has me feeling between fuck this song, I don’t like it and hey keep ur voice low these people go chop u, say something more diplomatic like “it’ll make sense on my second listen”.
3. Way too big.
I like this one, the beat, the melody and I like the pride in it, I’m a sucker for proud statements.
What’s Bebo? It’s not Yoruba, right? Rexxie Produced this so you already know I have a bias😂, the beat is fire definitely gon get you grooving and Burna accompanying melodies fit just right in.
Awesome, Awesome song, but we skipping cause I done played the life out of this song since it was released as a lead single off the Album.
I like the Ibo tune feel this song has, although the beat eventually kind of transcends into something a little different from the Ibo folk sound we are used to already, every time Burna sings “Say my baby my baby oh, You know Osondi Owendi oh, Coming like Onyeka Onwenu oh” my belle go just begin dey sweet me, Shouts to Funkilla, another solid song under his production belt.
7. Naughty by Nature.
This song swings between being a song about Girls and a song about being a hardened criminal I had to read over the lyrics over and over again and I’m still not sure I’ve fully gotten the picture, does well as a track filler for the Album,
Another Rexxie Production! The best thing about this song is the chorus, especially with it’s Call and Response feel! Beautiful song I like!.
9 No fit Vex.
Finally, a produced by Leriq and Burna boy collaboration. This feels a little Mid sha, I miss the Burna boy who sings about love where is he na, Nine songs in and I’ve heard like only one.
11. Time Flies ft Sauti Sol
Sauti Sol and Burna Boy always make beautiful beautiful songs! This is definitely one I can’t wait to come play again!
12. Monsters you made.
This song screams Protest!, the instrumentation, the lyricism, the melody, the accompanying Intro and Outro! 10/10 for this!
13. Weytin dey sup.
Love the kicks on this song, trying to find some more words to explain the rest of the song but the kick keeps on standing out!
14 Real life ft Stormzy.
That Stormzy Chorus lasan really does the job of colouring Burna’s verses, Burna sketched, Stormzy coloured!.
15. Bank on it.
I won’t be banking on this song, it’s not a bad tune at all I’m just a little disappointed that after 14 songs I didn’t get what I thought I’d hear from the LP.
My frustration with this Project is how many of the sounds just hinged and stuck to a particular feel, it never seemed to peak, it just felt like everyone just stuck to a particular script nobody really wanted to Rage and Pull a Madness (Wonderful, Monsters you Made and the song with Sauti sol are exemptions though).
Remember what I said about First impression?, I really do believe with more listens I’d buy into the exact theme of the project and whatever it is Burna really meant to sell or project, but for now here are the thoughts of a random boy from Shomolu on an Album by one of the Greatest Artiste of my time and an Album that might just go ahead and win a Grammy!.
Do me a favour don’t tag Burna boy to this o, if them find me, I go find you o! And if you see me celebrating Burna’s win of the Grammy if he does win it, don’t call me a Hypocrite cause I’m not, I truly know I’ll be rooting for him!
Thanks for reading and no I’m not looking forward to your angry response in the comment sections😂.
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