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Shane Eagle – Never Grow Up Album Review

Shane Eagle returns with a powerful EP – Never Grow Up

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Shane Eagle Never Grow Up Album Review

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Rating:
5
On January 8, 2019
Last modified:January 15, 2019

Summary:

Although victorious in shifting the landscape and defining a success that thrives beyond the bubble, Shane Eagle could be criminally underhyped. Never Grow Up bears proof.

Shane Eagle liberated a new body of work to succeed 2017’s critically acclaimed Yellow.

Almost two years since the lyricist dropped his last body of work, and since concluded a successful national tour named after his favourite luminous hue, we finally have Never Grow Up.  The 7-track project finds Eagle yet again stretching the limits of his own creative freedom – shunning the commercial seductions of trap bops to deliver yet another impressive offering.

His dissent from the establishment continues.

Like before, he’s not afraid to depart from the mould to carve his own nook on this record, a fact which informs his decision to remain independent. Unlike ever before, however, he invites his audience to explore different layers not only to his metamorphic artistry, but also the personal truth that he delivers with much poetic justice.

It’s a truth distilling his childhood as a biracial kid by parents whose roots span continents. Ronnie Hughes is a beautiful and sombre tale detailing the meanings Shane made of these worlds.

These dynamics would later enrich the lyricist’s repertoire of understanding; he touches on the experience of love that is bigger than the ‘regular story of how Europeans try to feast on Africa’s glory’, and expands the narrative to introduce personal acts of pure love that many of us never think about in this context.

READ: WHY ‘IYEZA’ IS ANATII’S BEST ALBUM YET 

Ronnie Hughes is the fourth track on the album, but easily amongst the best. Sonically, it’s a smooth continuation of the classical ecosystem that weaves the lush and classic flows that Eagle so triumphantly delivered on Yellow. Consistent with the album’s overall sound, the song layers organic, raw and classic tones to create a lo-fi Hip Hop atmosphere. The classic horn adds a touch of nostalgia that elevates Shane’s recollections, putting them in one hell of a vibey capsule.

It will take his audience less than 20 minutes to consume Never Grow Up. The EP is a piece of work in which Shane Eagle clearly intends to reconcile the chasm between the artist who blew up to add a veritable mark on the South African soundscape in the last few years, and the 22-year-old Shane Patrick Hughes.

Yellow‘s sibling arrives just weeks after Shane’s Yellow Tour ended with an impressive line-up of supporting acts that included contemporaries Nasty C and Shekhinah. The tour itself testified further to Shane’s disruptive game plan. He’d managed to have his debut album reach gold with minimal hype and almost no gimmicks, after all.

ALBUM REVIEW: NASTY C – STRINGS & BLING

Where the rapper has been successful in creating dialogues and piquing interest has lain solely in the creative expression of his art; which started with a carefully curated visual social media build-up to the release of Yellow. The gap between Yellow and Never Grow Up saw the arrival of a couple of singles – one which included a very random diss to AKA –  and that much talked about galactic visual for YellowVerse.

And while Shane has managed to sustain much of his privacy and the mystery that goes along with it, despite the success of Yellow, this offers his fans access. It’s telling then that he’s used his childhood photographs as visual tools to express this full circle. Homework As$ignment is a textual play that is complemented by the childlike typeface that is part of the album’s artwork.

Ap3x is the album’s promotional single, and it came out just before the album. It’s packed with attitude; Shane is keeping an eye on rappers who are now trying to borrow heavily from his style. It’s the quintessential Hip Hop lexicon strewn over boastful shots of self-aggrandizement that appear in every’ rappers album. It’s part of the culture. The song snaps, no doubt about more.

ALBUM REVIEW: AKA – TOUCH MY BLOOD

Far more interesting, as always, is when Eagle indulges his most musical instincts and delves – both sonically and lyrically – into his elastic ether of abstract thoughts.

Fans will delight on Chocolake Milk:

“I can’t belong I’m growing up this fast, gettin’ rich this quick”.

I’ve discovered there’s nothing quite like driving down Oak Avenue listening to Shane Eagle tackling metaphysical questions, like a metaphysical poet, of the spiritual nature of heaven – the place, the concept, the reality.

His interest in heaven appears severally across the album.

Ride Dolo: What You Wanna Be is that girl on this album.

Shane Eagle ate the hell out of this song. The flow, the tempo, the bars, the 808s… The hook is hella catchy. The whole song has a luxurious vibe with a hushing effect. Listening to this one felt like those moments when you are in a clothing store and that one outfit that exceeds your budget until you buy it over all the other items you could have had.

Although victorious in shifting the landscape and defining a success that thrives beyond the bubble, Shane Eagle could be criminally underhyped. Never Grow Up bears proof.

Music

Inside Zahara’s 5 Months Of Sobriety

Zahara has opened up about her 5 months without alcohol, saying she now wants to shine the spotlight on the mental health of local artists, who’d rather “destroy themselves” than face record labels.

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Zahara
Photo: Sowetan/Veli Nhlapo

It’s been 5 months since Zahara has consumed any alcohol.

The Afro-Pop songbird revealed to TshisaLive that she decided to quit after “one night I finished a whole bottle of wine by myself.”

This personal milestone attends to negative portrayals of the singer, who’s had to fight persistent reports of a drinking problem that is out of control. It’s a reputation she’s keen to challenge. “I want to show people that those stories aren’t true.”

It’s also a reputation, says the singer, that has been engineered to undermine her credibility amid her fight for album royalties.

READ: EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT DJ SBU’S NIPSEY HUSSLE SPEECH 

Her breakthrough moment, however, happened last year in October, when her mother and sister fasted in prayer as a means to intervene. She hasn’t had any since then, and doesn’t miss it.

The 30 year old afro-soul songstress has recently detailed rough patches she’s endured in recent months, most of which are related to the alleged heated disputes between her and her previous labels.

ALBUM REVIEW: ZAHARA – COUNTRY GIRL 

“I won’t be a statistic, I want my money”, says Zahara in a new Instagram post, in which she also gives out her personal mobile number. Repurposing lyrics from her hit single, Umthwalo (My baggage), she went on to clarify that the account was not hacked. Instead, she’s decided to use her platfom to expose unspoken realities in the music industry.

Speaking to IOL Entertainment, Zahara said she’s adamant to be heard.

“Some of my peers are suffering from depression, some have thrown themselves into drug abuse, others into the arms of men simply because they are afraid of admitting that they have no money, because the record labels are not paying us”, says the Loliwe hitmaker.

Zahara also said that she’s now pursuing legal action for said album royalties.

 

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Music

Nasty C Opens The Industry With ‘Lift As You Rise’

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Nasty C, Tellaman, Rowlene for Lift As You Rise

More and more of Mzansi’s hip-hop artists are climbing the ladder of success with the support and mentorship of hip-hop collectives.

This phenomenon brings to life a gripping narrative that the local hip-hop space is overloaded with inherent quality and talent. With this in mind, Red Bull Music and Tall Racks Records have joined forces to form Lift As You Rise; a music project that is aimed at uplifting artists across South Africa and subsequently catapults them into success.

Made up of unstoppable forces Nasty C, Tellaman, Gemini Major, Rowlene, Lastee and Zino D, the Lift As You Rise project will see these artists come together to produce multiple open tracks.

These tracks will incorporate verses from the collective artists, excluding 16 bars that will allow Mzansi’s aspiring artists to add their verses and subsequently completing the tracks. As a result, SA’s budding musicians can contribute to the songs and add their parts so as to complete the tracks.

The musicians will then need to upload their tracks onto their respective social media platforms with the correct tags.

Red Bull Music and Tall Racks Records will then select the best artists. Successful artists will get an opportunity to go into the Red Bull Music Recording Studios in Cape Town where songs will be recorded culminating in complete tracks released to the public.

“A much-undervalued part of the music industry is collaboration, especially in the world of fresh and independent hip-hop artists,” Nasty C comments.

“At the moment, our music culture in SA is becoming more and more open to sharing and collaborating and this is the culture the Lift As You Rise project looks to achieve. This is the era where budding artists need to catch up with the understanding that they must collaborate to take their gift one step further.”

Rowlene adds, “Collaboration is the biggest uplifting force driving music today. To young and upcoming artists looking to project their talents onto a bigger audience, the Lift As You Rise project is the powerful stepping stone.”

For more information on the Lift As You Rise project, visit http://redbull.co.za/lift-as-you-rise

 

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Music

Beyoncé’s Homecoming Doccie To Premiere on Netflix

Beyonce’s Coachella documentary is coming to Netflix

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Beyonce Homecoming Netflix

Beyoncé has premiered the first look into her looming documentary, and the streets are shaken.

The promo for ‘Homecoming‘ landed on the internet on Monday. The South African beyhive is in for a treat as the documentary will surface on Netflix, April 17th.

The picture is set to chronicle the journey to one of Beyoncé’s most iconic performances – Beychella.

The doccie will feature the actual performance – which means you can now stop scouring the internet for that pixelated footage obtained from the live stream – as well behind the scenes preparations for the critically lauded show.

The piece is said to offer an “intimate, in-depth look” at the concert, revealing “the emotional road from creative concept to cultural movement,” Netflix said.

Will you be streaming this one? Join the conversations in the comments section below, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

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