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Review: Blue Lab Beats – Motherland

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The production duo’s third project is a showcase of their range, intercrossing genres and showing off their chemistry as synced-minded producers. The duo met almost a decade ago, at WAC arts when Namali was thirteen & was David eighteen, they’ve held their own and grown as a pair feeding off each other’s knowledge, which runs through all their projects.

Motherland Journey is one hell of a body of work, seventeen songs that combine new sounds, acoustic instruments, and thick heavy African drums that creates ambient miniatures as if the ancestors thumped the sounds themselves.

An hour of quality production with well-selected features, the intro sets the tone for this journey, with “Labels” taking turns into a smooth run, with a verse from Kofi Stone. The tempo is slowed a bit as Tiana Major9’s shares her soothing vocals, her writing skills balance the narrative of the song: a love-struck journey that has no label.   

On a relaxed production, Tina Tinks inserts assurance into the song, allowing the duo to tailor the song with strong trumpet sounds.

“Gotta go fast” takes a different turn, it’s fastened a bit, with BLB at the wheel, but it’s Poppy Daniel’s trumpet skills that switch through the gears here,  the same energy is shared on “A VIBE”, with BLB handling the production as expected.

British singer Emmavie gets a slot on the album, allowing BLB’s production to settle before she pens down a self-challenging verse on “Don’t let it get away”. Halfway into the album and you’ll just have to admire the level of production here, it’s effortless and carefully arranged, given its replay value on the songs. 

They bring the journey to one of the fastest-growing genres in the world; Afrobeats. BLB links up with Grammy-nominated Ghanaian artist Ghetto boy, who brings the full afrobeat vibe to the table. On a groovy production, he switches between French and pidgin English as he avails himself for “Delilah”, it’s easily the most enjoyable song on the project; because of its catchy chorus.


Ghetto boy’s performance earns him another slot on the next song, and it’s a more sensual song, allowing him to explore his sexuality on a dancy production.

Easily the best song on the album, “Motherland Journey” is a masterpiece, no wonder the song holds the same name as the album, featuring Ghanaian legendary producer, Killbeatz, the trio linked up in Accra during a late-night session and crafted a heavenly production,  opening with a carefully coined guitar string, it’s accompanied by drums and well-laced harmonies, and the best part of the song is Fela Kuti’s presence.

Blessed by the Kuti estate, they sample his 1975 hit “everything scatter”, merging the Afrobeat pioneer’s vocals with their flawless production to give us a quality record. What makes the album a perfect one is the guest features, everyone understood the assignment,  “Slow down”, “Dat it” & “Real good” is sheer proof, rounding it off with the outro.

If you’re a sucker for good and detailed production, this body of the work is the perfect pick for you, BLB and their collaborators deliver yet another moment of bliss from a well-placed project, paying attention to both the vocal excellence and quality production. 

The iMullar is the definitive voice of emerging African music and the lifestyle that surrounds it, showcasing exceptional talent from all around the globe focused on promoting the most distinctive new artists and original sounds, we are the authority on who is next.

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