LOVE, DAMINI: AN ALBUM REVIEW
Our very own African Giant, Burna Boy, may just be well on his way to being crowned the King of Afro-fusion. His Sixth album, Love, Damini, features African artists and other renowned musicians from all over the globe like J Hus, Popcaan, Blxst, Kehlani and Khalid . There is a perfect blend of Burna’s sound with that of the featured artists, while still retaining his originality.
The Grammy-award winning superstar, Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu, announced some months after his fifth studio album, Twice as Tall, won the Best Global Award category at the 63rd Grammy ceremony that his next album was going to be dedicated to his fans. This insinuates that African Giant and TAT, were primarily for international recognition while still catering to the musical needs of his fans. So, will Love, Damini, the artist’s gift to both himself and his fans gather as much global acclaim as his previous albums?
The 19-track album begins and ends with a feature from the South African male choral group, Ladysmith Black Mazambo, giving the album a complete feel. On both tracks, the traditional African sounds and minimal use of instruments, allow us to appreciate Burna’s and the group’s talented vocals.
Last Last and For My Hand – which features Ed Sheeran are love themed tracks which may lead you to shed a tear or two depending on your mood. In Last Last, the artist croons “e don cast, last last, everybody go chop breakfast“, reminding us that celebrity or not, no one is immune to getting heartbroken.
For my Hand has Ed Sheeran written all over it, as it bears similarities to the theme and flow of various of the singer and songwriter’s previous works. It also points out why Ed Sheeran is a favorite when it comes to collaborations with African artists as he sounds so natural singing in pidgin.
The fast-paced tempo and beat of tracks like Science, Jagele, Vanilla and It’s Plenty will have you bopping your head and dancing before you even realize it. This makes the album very useful if you’re trying to create a party playlist.
In Whiskey, Burna shows us that though he’s taking a more playful angle with this album, he is not oblivious to the sufferings of his people. The song opens with the line, “Port-Harcourt people are not breathing fresh air”, thereby, telling anyone who cares to listen how badly the air in the city is polluted.
No one is left out in the message Burna is trying to pass across. Common Person is dedicated to every ordinary person struggling out there, reminding them that they are seen and entitled to happiness.
Burna signs out of the album with the track titled Love, Damini which embodies the self-reflection that he is known for incorporating in his songs.
The artist has set a high standard with his previous albums, and the laid back groovy feel of Love, Damini might put it short of AG and TAT. In comparison to the masterpieces that African Giant and Twice as tall are, I’d score his latest LP 6.5 out of 10. The album sounds like a playlist of different good songs and does not tell a particular story. However, that does not take away the fact that Burna’s sixth studio album was a job well done.
I recommend that you listen to it if you haven’t and let me know what your favorite tracks are. The link to this album is attached below: