Joey Akan

Critic

Nigeria

Joey Akan is a Category Editor at Pulse. An Award-winning writer, presenter, poet and music critic, Joey leans on the crazy aspects of journalism with a unique skill-set.

Black Times

Date: 02 Mar 2018 Category: Music
9.0 Rating
Seun Kuti is a firebrand campaigner. His soul is empathetic, his music deeply protestant, and his drive, tenacious. He learned from the best. The 35-year-old singer, bandleader and saxophonist, is one of the sons of legendary Nigerian Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti. When Fela passed away in 1997, Seun – only 14 years old at the time – became the lead singer of his father's band, Egypt 80. Now Seun leads that band, and – along with his older ...

Oṣó

Date: 27 Mar 2018 Category: Music
9.0 Rating
The futility of life. The disaster of corruption. The wickedness of man. Finding demons everywhere you look. Musicians have long pointed fingers at something or a life event that brings them into a realm of depth and understanding of the world around them. For Brymo, it’s nothing special. That’s his default state, and he makes music from the world around him. Digging into the fabric of our existence, and the relationship between ourselves and ...

One People One World

Date: 23 Feb 2018 Category: Music
9.0 Rating
This is part-rant, part-plea. From start to finish, Femi Kuti takes on all our collective conscience as a people and continent to remind us of all the greatness and ideal that we have to live up to. Femi Kuti is in his 10 album. “One People, One World”, the 12-track project released under Knitting Records, comes from where all of his art does; a desire to see the lot of Africa improve, its people happy, justice served, and the world better ...

Rendezvous

Date: 09 Feb 2018 Category: Music
8.0 Rating
M.I Abaga has called his latest release – “Rendezvous” a ‘playlist’. It is not an album or a mixtape. It’s a curated collection of records, with a clear storyline, that carries through all the records. Although this is a first in Nigeria, it isn’t exactly an original idea. US rapper Drake most likely inspired his decision to do this, with the branding and marketing for his 2017 “More Life” project. When you really come dow ...

Late Night Vibrations

Date: 29 Jan 2018 Category: Music
7.0 Rating
Bella Alubo is complex in the manner that she has chosen to alter her sound, almost abandoning the bars and wordplay of rap, for the softer, melodic application in singing. Her single ‘Gimme love’ had prepared fans and enthusiasts for what is to come. But at the very least, none expected what is contained here. She isn’t just a partner on this 6-track EP titled ‘Late Night Vibrations’, she’s an anchor and a muse to balance out Ycee ...

First Daze of Winter EP

Date: 11 Jan 2018 Category: Music
8.0 Rating
This is Maleek Berry at his finest. He’s wooing a lady from start to finish, offering his heart, body and spirit in the pursuit of wholeness in passion. And while he doesn’t always win, he scores points for being earnest, sincere and melodious. This is only Maleek Berry’s sophomore EP, but it is appearing at a time when his profile stands very tall. Think of his previous body of work – “Last Daze Of Summer,” – which arrived at a ...

Aphrodija EP

Date: 15 Dec 2017 Category: Music
9.0 Rating
The problem with Di’Ja isn’t that she doesn’t have talent. It’s simply the application of it that has prevented her from soaring. You could feel it manifest in bits and spurt, feel it rear its pretty head in some records. And when she performs live, it flourishes. But it hasn’t grown to the level that is expected of it. That anticipation to see Mavin Records singer bloom and thrive is slowly giving way to resignation, but she isn’t ...

Black Magic

Date: 15 Dec 2017 Category: Music
5.0 Rating
How long can Yemi Alade continue down this path of mid-level music? How long can we all have to endure seeing such a talent be dumbed down to a point where there is nothing but tasteless attempts to make ‘African pop music’? For the better part of three years, Yemi Alade has created and sustained a special brand of traditional pop culture dominance by attempting to create a brand of music of traditional African music. But it has created a ...

Ojekoo EP

Date: 15 Dec 2017 Category: Music
9.0 Rating
This isn’t the Juls that you know. This is different. It’s a version of the producer that we have waited this long to experience. We were first introduced to Juls via Mr Eazi. The producer crafted the sound that powered the Banku Music singer across Ghana to Africa and the world. And to properly document that, Juls made an EP – “Leap Of Faith” – which properly curated and presented the sound. He is back this time, a new man with ...

High Star

Date: 24 Nov 2017 Category: Music
7.0 Rating
Yung6ix is the best Nigerian rapper to ever walk these streets and hit these mics. At least that’s how he sees it in his head. If you follow Yung6ix on social media, it’s a lesson in self-confidence. Open his mind, and you will discover he’s the Sango of flows, the Zeus of punch lines, and the Thor of hit records. It can be a beautiful thing to see, but sometimes (I mean many times), it’s maddening when you compare it with his status in t ...