One Listen Review: M.I Abaga – “Illegal Music III”
One Listen Review: Illegal Music III
This is not a late review but a publication that comes away from all hype and fan reactions that come an M.I project. That he can still pull off such excitement among fans says more about his quality and the pedigree of his projects. So after the unprecedented success that came with the previous two mixtapes, we hope this one lives up to the billing
A One Listen Review is an unadulterated perception of a project on first listen. Just a documentation of what goes through my mind as I listen from cover to cover. No pause, no rewind. Straight feelings and emotions as the music registers. Enjoy
This first sample sounds like some Malcom X type deep shii. Seems like this is not your regular everybody rap project. If you’re looking for feel good rap, just leave this mixtape and move on. This incredibly feels like personal record but with acknowledgement that he remains the best at this (all respects). This is some very serious song that’s not for banging but for the depth. Warning: light a blunt before this song.
Everything I Have Seen:
M.I and singing tho. Lol, he has no voice but lyrics. An extension-ish of the first song but with more energy. I like it. I start to feel like I’m going to enjoy this whole project if it goes after this tone. Message is along the same lines as Meek Mill’s “Watch Who Youre Around”.
Black Bill Gates:
More singing. More sampling as well but nicely played. Nice introduction to a power jam by whoever that person at the beginning is. Mr Incredible upped the tempo on his verse here to put together a good short record. Like foreplay without the actual intercourse.
NotJustOk/Savage ft Burna Boy:
Shots fired!. Is that anger a tone of anger? Finally someone is addressing this cheap publicity surrounding blogging and online journalism. That selfie line is very chilled after shouts to Mode 9 and Eldee. That is one hilarious interview mid-song. Nice switchup from the beat. Better not be another song. Yes Jude, say your piece and stick to it. Ain’t with tweet and delete. And I didn’t nut before the end of this one either.
We have a Jay-Z sample and a beat that Pusha T and K.Dot buried. Doing good so far tho and he’s actually giving them a run for their money low-key. Reinstating his supremacy and vision is seperate from the rest. Another sample. I’ll not spoil the surprise for you rap fans. The energy on the song is not lost on me though, even if it sneaks up on you gradually. He did well on that second beat too.
Head of the Family:
Another Jay-Z sample. I guess M.I has proven he has the quality to play with some of this. M.I shows his versality with this trap music vibe. And M.I actually defines an era in Nigerian music from Wizkid to IcePrince. Now we enter a Kanye sample and he’s saving a word for those that doubted his management ability with ChocCity. Another sample. And it’s clear he wants to run with royalty because we are touching Beyonce. A lecture at the end on marriage for all of you that believe in love, marriage and all that.
The Box ft Pryse:
The soft acoustics at the start is really good. Nigerian rap/music really requires a new facet like fresh air. Seems we have less groundbreakers and trail blazers than followers that maintain the status quo. Make something new and touch lives differently. Break the mould. I’ve missed Pryse really. Its refreshing hearing a new voice that’s not doing a hook, bridge or sample. Who is this Ckay, I like what I’m hearing.
Feels like a love song, indefinite yet whether to a mother or bae. Mr. Abaga wrote a love song for non-rap people buy only if you enjoy classics along the likes of Smokie Robinson.
Remember Me ft Ruby Gyang:
Queen Ruby has come to slay us with vocals… again. This is that song a where a rapper attempts to cement his legacy in the halls of time much like Jay-Z on Forever and probably warn y’all not to forget his effort to the beats and dances of pangolo music. Did he just hint at he end of the Illegal Music project? Very soulful song still when you combine the message and what Ruby is doing to a man’s taste buds. Ruby’s voice can literally give a man a musical hard on. One of Nigeria’s underrated voices. I don’t understand the sound of this last sample. Doesn’t flow with the rest of the song.
Despite the fact that M.I didn’t go with the introcduction of new/upcoming acts, this is a really good project that actually tells its story. It feels like a self-centred project but I couldn’t think of a better way to close the Illegal Music Project. Relative to other materials we have heard on Nigerian mixtapes I’d say this scored 7.5/10. Sorry I have high standards.
Now I’m off to listen to it for myself. Hope you have as much fun as I had
Reviewed By @Yeye_King_
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