The Sunday Mail
THE year 2018 is proving to be action packed as far as music releases are concerned.
Debate among music fans and analysts on albums that would have made an impact in a particular year are so common every year-end.
But this time around, the considerations will be much more interesting considering the number of albums that have been released thus far, and more to follow.
First to set the ball rolling was Winky D, one of the big five artistes in the country.
The chanter, whom is also affectionately known as the Gafa, launched his eighth album —“Gombwe” — on February 2 in Harare.
And since then, floodgates have been opened.
It is still a long way to go before 2018 shuts down but already, the market is saturated with fresh albums as artistes are not holding back.
Musicians who include Alick Macheso, Killer T, ExQ, Takura, Freeman, Andy Muridzo, Tendai Manatsa and Mbeu, to mention but a few, have already given fans a dose of their creativity, albeit with different impact.
Some of the projects have produced hit songs that are doing well on music charts but some have by-and-large passed unnoticed.
Not everyone is lucky after all.
Winky D’s “Gombwe” has tracks like “Ngirozi”, “Finhu Finhu”, “Donha” and “Simba” that have managed to stand their ground on the market.
These songs have managed to make the Gafa’s product relevant on the market and in turn guarantee that his project will be one of the talked about when debate time comes.
More productions came in April.
The month was eventful as Killer T, ExQ and Takura, giants in dancehall and hip-hop, ‘conspired’ to deliver pulsating projects that had been cooking for some time.
Killer T, who is also known as The Chairman, is undoubtedly one of the most talented artistes of this generation and his latest offering “Mashoko Anopfuura” seems to be exactly what the doctor ordered.
While critics fired shots at the project citing numerous shortcomings, fans had a different opinion, deciding to absorb the “new music” and automatically certifying a couple of tracks as hits.
“Hondo”, which features Jah Prayzah and “Kufamba KwaPaurosi” have simply been some of the loudest songs this year, with “Rudo Ibofu” and “Waidongorera” also getting favourable reception.
Hip-hop artistes Takura and ExQ, either by design or default, decided to unleash their music on the same weekend, something that sparked excitement for the genre’s followers.
Prior to the launch of “Tseu Tseu”, ExQ had already fired warning shots with “Tsvigiri”, a track from the album which made an immediate impact.
“Pahukama”, which features Jah Prayzah, started attracting numbers after the release of the video in May.
But his collaboration with Freeman on “Nzenza” seems to be carrying most weight on the album.
On the other hand, there was much anticipation prior to Takura’s “SHTDi” album launch considering that his single titled “Mai Mwana” was doing well.
However, “SHTDi” failed to take-off as projected despite the brilliant artistry on the album.
The same can be said on Freeman’s latest offering “Mukuru Wekambani”.
At one point, the dancehall artiste was in the upper echelon of the genre, but his new offering sort of suggests he has since lost the position.
“Mukuru Wekambani” was launched in May and it appears it has failed to take off the ground.
No one seems interested in the album.
The only relevance that the HKD Boss is getting is through ExQ’s song “Nzenza”, which he features on.
Another victim is Andy Muridzo.
His current album “Munondo” is good in all senses but is failing to break barriers. Muridzo is yet to once again attain the levels he reached with songs like “Dherira” and “Chidhafu Dhunda” some years back.
Indications are that it is not going to happen with his latest offering.
Being among some of the most touted upcoming talents, Mbeu has shown great potential and with time, he might just be one of the big guns in the industry.
The artiste has since made his intentions in the music industry clear by releasing his debut album “Hatizvimirire”. This one is fairly new and only time will tell if his steps are in the right direction.
Tryson Chimbetu is expected to drop his sixth album “Kana Mazogara” later this month.
With a few more months to go before the year ends and several other major players yet to give fans their 2018 dosages, one can be pardoned for concluding that this is going to be one of the best years in the music industry in recent times.