After a decade of being the hottest rapper in Nigeria (Africa maybe), it was only a matter of time before M.I Abaga decided he didn’t need hype to sell an album. So, in what is a twist, we weren’t surprised when he pulled a Beyonce on us, last year.
He announced his much anticipated “Yxng Dxnzl” album, and later that night, released a mixtape (without any prior notice). A playlist called “Rendezvous”, and although why that name was chosen is a hard nut to crack, the reason it’s a playlist was visible. It had so many genres, unusual collaborations and was long enough to make two M.I albums.
But the fun part is, it had good music on it. From the street-inspired “Lekki” with Falz and Ajebutter22 to the Trap “Slow” featuring Straffiti and Blaqbonez or the Wande coal assisted “Kososhi.” Oh, and not forgetting, the fire jam, “Playlist” which had none other than Nonso Amadi.
Nonso is Nigerian, with some foreign vibe, that is almost synonymous to alternative music, these days. Posh accent, classy lyrics, minimalist production, all that. Nonso Amadi’s got it all. He came to limelight with “Tonight”, back in the day, and quickly had a big shot at the mainstream. He crossed the line and became a sensation.
A number of chart-topping singles and an album later, M.I Abaga linked up with him for one of the best songs on the “Rendezvous” playlist, which incidentally is titled “Playlist” So, what’s the vibe on the track that makes it cool? Well, it’s M.I without the raps.
Nonso did some bad-ass vocals and set an atmosphere for the veteran rapper to flow in. It’s a love song, so it’s definitely going to be cool even if it had a few bars, but M.I found the alternative style the way to go, so he flowed. And, it did have a few bars, auto-tuned however, but it was still Abaga in his lyrical state. Nothing watered down at all. Raw vibes.
These days, the alternative vs hip-hop conversation is something everyone wants to weigh in on, but one thing people seem to forget is that when M.I, hip-hop’s most respected guy, gave a friendly nod to alte when he did take an awesome track, “Playlist.”
Why else would he come back after nineteen months with an official video? Well, it’s clear. It means something to M.I, and it’s some alternative music and hip-hop right there. Good for the culture!
Maybe the new music video also means he’s planning on dropping some stuff soon. It’s almost a year since his groundbreaking album, “Yxng Dxnzl” was released, to positive critical acclaim. It’s not such a bad time of the year, too. Summer is here!