“50bucks a pop, 500k up in my first week” – A-Q on Timi Dakolo’s “Wish Me Well Cover”
At a time where Hiphop in Nigeria is being dominated by indigenous rappers, at a time where the legendary Modenine is given out 30 songs for 30 days for free, at a time it is where lyricism, punchlines and word play in
rap is seen as not profitable, at a time where complex magazine names Nigerian pop stars as the best rappers in the game, A-Q dares the impossible and puts out a 14 track Hip- hop/rap album, to be sold digitally for just 50naira ($0.29) would see the rapper attempt something really unique that could open Pandora’s box for our music industry. Son Of John 2 (The Album) is the sequel to Son Of John (The Mixtape) which was released August 2014. That’s probably the best nigerian mixtape I’ve heard since Illegal Music 1 & Pentium IX.
I bought the album off itunes and here are my thoughts:
The album opens with the thundering voice of DJ Jimmy Jatt acknowledging A-Q as the worlds greatest, the Opera chants in the background plays on as A-Q opens the album with a rather ironical statement “Hopped out of a lear nah that was just a dream Hopped out of a molue” the short intro gets you in the mood to get on with the album and its quickly followed by PRE ELECTION DAY – a fictional story of an event that happened during the election period, the rapper get into trouble for trying to assist a politician win an election. Still in the election or political spirit like the
album was recorded during the elections, A-Q delivers one of my favourites songs on the album POLITRICKS, the track talks about nigerian politics in relation to the industry “The game is like Nigerian Politics / you got a lot of Money? you might get all of it / but first, you need major connects / and if you’re with the ruling Party, you will collect / the parties are the Labels,the party chairmen are the CEO’s” the featured artist Rez brings a new melody to the song with a country music vibe
on the chorus… Got me thinking the album was probably recorded during the elections.
The next song with the ridiculous title P0RN, placed on the Fela sampled beat in a very skillful rhyme scheme, it hard to believe this was a freestyle as the rapper claims it to be.
FREE THINKER calms the high P0RN would have brought a listener, the rapper enters a zone of deep thoughts, spitting what seems to
be sporadic thoughts, the song ends in a beautiful rendition by project fame finalist Antwon. Next track, HAPPY a feel good song,
got the rapper spitting bars talking about what he has to go through in the industry and at some point talking to God. His longtime friend & producer beats by jay brings back an old school feeling on the hook.
LOVE ME comes next; this is like the ‘Reminder’ on Jigga’s Blueprint3, a track which didn’t fit the concept of the album, whole song just falls out of the direction the album is going.I DONT NEED LOVE got the rapper bragging independence and self sufficiency.
What’s an album without a song for the
ladies, A-Q talks about his break up with a certain girl and the need to have her back on LEFT-RIGHT the beat has a kanye feel to it and brings serenade to the album. “now you hanging out with ice prince/ said the homey bought you nice things” A-Q grumbles on the
2nd verse. The need for every rapper to feel Godlike comes up on BETWEEN THE DEVIL
AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA; Rez again did justice to the chorus and A-Q flexes “The devil is a lie, God is the truth / every time I step to the mic i let God in the booth” the 2nd
verse would be my best verse on the album “i’m heading home, carry my cross / as a chain on my neck see it’s better i floss / crown full of thorns, holes in my hands / crucify me cause i know where i stand” the rapper compares his life to suffering of Christ.
The track that have got everyone talking is Peter Clark, Pay Bac, Teeto Ceemos, Eclipse and Lord v come along to assist A-Q on MOSIAC MUSIC, everyone brought their best to the table, but Lord V’s flow has been known to injure beats as he goes “Constellation stars only, Son of John / Son of God / i am lord / bars only” A-Q also shows off his strength here with witty bars, dude sounded really pissed like Eminem on Recovery.. One of the
best cuts off the album no doubt.
The last three tracks were previously
released, but the new beat by Bionic that replaced the previous beat gives the TIWA SAVAGE song a new look, and it sounds very
pleasing I must say.
STRENGHT: A dope hiphop album for heads, the variation in topics keeps the album interesting, its hard to skip a track, the lyrics are present day, A-Q’s story telling ability is impeccable. Its the right time for A-Q to drop this album and its also a good time for hiphop, the arrangement of the album is really good as i don’t see a better arrangement of the tracks, the production is top notch and this album could stand the test of time.
WEAKNESSES: the commercial value of the album is low, there could have been one or more commercial songs, LOVE ME did not fit the theme of the album for me, more could have been done on the LEFT-RIGHT beat, mixing on one or two of the songs on the album could have been better, A-Q limits