TCW’S BEST ALBUMS OF 2016

It’s that time of the year again guys! Damn, this year has flown by real quick hasn’t it? I didn’t even have time to properly analyze all the music that’s been released this year. I’m writing this while on vacation so forgive me if this piece seems a bit rushed. Anyway, I think 2016 was a quite an incredible year for music. Although I feel underwhelmed by some releases, generally the music released was stellar. If you’re expecting to find Drake, Rihanna, Beyonce or Kanye West on this list then you’re on the wrong list. I’m only mentioning the LPs that really stood out to me and that I feel came out at significant points of these artists’ careers.

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ALBUM REVIEW: FRANK OCEAN – BLONDE

The greatly anticipated sophomore album by Frank Ocean is finally here.  Frank has officially pulled a Lazarus on us, but he came back better than before. He also released a visual album “Endless” which is impressionistic to say the least. I must say the announcement was underwhelming at first probably because I didn’t even think it was true. Every week there would be a lot of buzz about him dropping the album which turned out to be bullshit. The disappointment would kill me every single time. For us die hard Frank Ocean fans, it’s the end of a long wait…I’m low-key going to miss all the funny memes and trolls though. On a more personal note, “Nostalgia Ultra” got me through a lot of shit in the past so I mean it when I say I needed this album. I actually had to listen to “Channel Orange” one more time before diving wholeheartedly into “Blonde”. It’s safe to say right now that my heart wasn’t ready.

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PYRONAIRO: THE BIRTH OF A MOVEMENT

In the past year alone, the underground music scene in Nairobi has been bursting with so much talent and ingenuity. It has many hidden gems  who you may not necessarily hear on the radio or see on television. You just need to know where to look.

PyroNairo might be a hashtag you’ve seen one someone’s Facebook presumptuously as they post a link to a song, but do you really know what it means? The term “Pyro” itself means something related to fire. I know it sounds corny but when you listen to music being put out you can be assured that it’s nothing less than flames.

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INTERVIEW WITH BRIAN SIMBA

I guess it’s finally time we put a spotlight on Tanzanian music on this godamn blog !Whenever you think about Tanzanian music honestly don’t you just think of that music that Ali Kiba , Diamond Platinumz and  the rest do? All that music is great, don’t get me wrong but during my usual rounds on Soundcloud I came across a rapper who gave me some new insight into Tanzanian music and especially Tanzanian hip-hop. Brian Simba is his name, and his mixtape “Masaki Theory”  carries such individualism (something a lot of East African artists lack by the way) , and it’s of such stellar quality that I was actually disappointed in myself for not discovering him sooner.

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ALBUM REVIEW: SKEPTA – KONNICHIWA

British grime artist Skepta just blessed us with his fourth studio album, Konnichiwa.  Skepta’s roll of success has been unstoppable lately, and just when I thought it was gonna die down, he brings forth this very solid LP.  I predict this album is gonna be a huge hit, not only in the UK but worldwide so if you meet a couple of youngins trying to speak in roadman slang after this then you know the reason.

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