REVIEW: The NIWE AKEINE EP
Akeine started her professional musical journey about a couple of years ago and has not looked back since. She has dropped singles like “Wanted” and “Mpumuza”. She has also featured on a number of tracks, including 1der Jr’s “Gonja” and Ch!ef’s “Harre”, where she killed the hook. A couple of weeks ago, she announced the release of her self-titled E.P (Niwe Akeine) and we were eager to listen to whatever she and Axon had managed to cook up.
As The Tribe UG, we got our first sneak peek into her E.P when we went to The Meat Guy to watch Akeine perform alongside Lagum and Joshua Baraka. Together with Lagum, she delivered a stellar performance of “Uninspired”, which is the first track off the project. A week later, we got to see them perform the same song at her listening party at Tavern Breeze, where she explained that the song was written at a time when she was feeling rather uninspired. If that is what she can come up with while uninspired, I wonder what she will be able to do at the peak of her inspiration.
The project includes five other songs, featuring artists like Joshua Baraka, Denesi, Walter Yt, Gideon Roots, and the spoken word poet, Ssebo Lule. She takes us through a variety of singing and writing styles, showing off her musical range. Akeine played and performed all the tracks off the E.P at her listening party in Najjera, drawing praise and applause from the crowd for each one of them, especially “Correct” (which reminds me of some of the music that Ekky used to make) and “Legeza” which features Denesi and Walter Yt.
On Friday 18th February 2022, the project finally dropped. I have personally taken my time to internalize it. I have watched the songs performed live, I’ve played them in the office, I’ve played them while chilling with friends, I’ve played them in the shower, I’ve played them on the road… The vibe is always right. Kudos to Akeine for dropping a debut project that shows so much potential, and has us looking forward to seeing what else she will deliver further down the line as she continues to grow into her musical career.
I have read a number of positive reviews on social media, but I would like to say something about one of the songs that is not being mentioned as much; Akeine and Joshua Baraka teamed up to deliver “Carry On”. The song is well written, the vocals are well-executed, and the musicality is great! However, beyond all this, there is a message to which we can all relate. At the listening party, Akeine mentioned that this message of the need to carry on/keep it going/never give up should be something with which every artist in our music industry is familiar. Just as she says in the song, we can only hope that Akeine will continue to put in 100% and leave no room for regret!
It would be unfair to complete this without saying a bit more about Axon! I do not know if people have realized the fire that this man is bringing to the industry. It is true that Axon is surrounded by a number of talented artists, but it takes a good producer to harness this talent and make it into the musical gold that he keeps delivering. Check the stats! Axon is not just the producer behind the Niwe Akeine project, he has produced some of our favorite songs on both Kohen Jaycee’s Wena and Wena II projects, as well as a number of great songs by Rulz, Lamu, Cxnrvd, Denesi… One could easily make a good “Heyo Axon” playlist, and it would definitely be a vibe!!!
If I had to pick my favorites;
Track 4: Correct (“…why you lying through your teeth? squeaky clean, yet you fill them up with filth…”)
Track 5: Carry On ft. Joshua Baraka (“…was it the wish I threw in the well, was it magic or a spell..”)
Track 6: Legeza ft. Denesi & Walter Yt (“…Legeza, Legeza, legeza, legeza, legezaaa…”)
Check out the project HERE and let us know what you think.