There is no world where Afro-pop and the growth of it in Nigeria will slip without the mention of the name, Wande Coal.
In 2009, when he released his debut album, ‘Mushin 2 Mo’ Hits‘, he became one of the most respected artiste in the game, to own and work wonders on a sub-genre to Afrobeats. There’s no gainsaying that the project became the platform upon which Afro-pop in Nigeria grew, an outcome which skyrocketed the place of Wande Coal from middle to the top of the music hierarchy.
So, on September 11, 2020 when he released his highly-anticipated EP, Realms, you could imagine the adrenaline rush we had for someone who who had not put out a project for six years. In all honesty, perhaps the not-aesthetically pleasing artwork for the project should have given us an idea that this work would be disappointing.
As if that was not enough, the ‘Rotate’ singer choose to drop a 7-track EP with only two fresh songs. We had Vex and Ode Lo Like released in 2019. Again and Naughty Girl came earlier this year. We were to make do with the other songs on the EP. For someone who had been out of projects for a while, this is a disappointing way to make a comeback, or an entry; whichever you please.
If this is not laziness, it’s one of the most lackadaisical attitude in music, and its worse because Wande Coal holds a veteran position.
The EP is obviously a sort of “let me be” project. It will get the streams, because he has a collage of dedicated and loyal fans, but it doesn’t take away the fact that this work is an insult to music lovers globally.
The songs on the album are good, there is no doubt about that. In fact, Again might be one of the best Afro-pop songs released this year. That however, does not change the fact that from a veteran artiste, this EP leaves a bad and sour taste.
Check and Ever Blazin are good songs that will keep the radio waves busy for a while, but the chances of these songs doing more than that is very slim. The guitar in the former sits plays beautifully and syncs with Coal’s tenor voice.
In all honesty, if Wande Coal knows he is not ready to release a definitive project, then there was no need to placate his fans with a conciliatory EP, that has only two new songs.
For those who might want to argue that Joeboy pulled the same stunt in 2019 with his Love and Light EP, it is pertinent to realize that we hold Wande Coal to a much higher standard as a veteran artiste, just like we hold Pastor David Ibiyeomie to a much higher standard as a clergyman. Wrong analogy but you get the drift. Photo Credit: Instagram