[Review] Sunkanmi’s — “Body Language EP”

Adanna O
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If you’re leaving this page with one thing, it should be: 

Sunkanmi’s Extended Play, ‘Body Language’, blends tempos and genres with a fluidity only dexterous production can guarantee”.

You may remember her from her collaboration with the Olamide from his Eyan Mayweather era. The song was ‘For Body’. Well, even if you don’t— some do. The song had pretty exceptional verses. From chanting “sukanmik peperempe” on ‘For Body’ to taking a break and making a comeback with the Young Jonn produced and Indomix engineered ‘Zobo’, one can only cite improvements in her craft, these improvements have come full circle on her latest effort.

On ‘Understand’, Sunkanmi reminds the listener of the friendzone. It’s empowering to see the leap of faith in action. The confidence in the lyrics is great to see. It’s a great introduction to the project and sets the tone for what comes next. The jazz influences in ‘Sugar Loving’ instantly separate it from the STG engineered opener. The track is arguably the most Afrobeats-infused record on the project. Sunkanmi coasts on the beat, even managing to rhyme “kick and snare” with “share”— curiously, she took time off to focus on sound engineering (maybe, this was what inspired the reference. Maybe). 

‘Body Language’ is great Afropop music. The saxophone never lets up, not once. One of the more impressive bits of this song are the chants. They’re distinctly African. Supported by the “o wa mi wa, ko wo pata” lyrics, the chants become somewhat primal, a flavour that is necessary to truly convey the sensual nature of the project. A testament to the fact that the entire project was a genre flex, ‘With You’ brings electric house music into the project. The song should definitely receive greater consideration in east and southern African markets.

A testament to the projects fusion of genres is the amapiano laden ‘Back Then’. One must credit Indomix for the superb effort with the sound engineering. However, sometimes the lyrics were a little difficult to hear. From the perspective of someone who understands how impressive Sunkanmi can be on features, it’d have been nice to see “No No” as a feature. While the song is a remarkable effort as it currently is, one cannot help but wonder “… what if it was ‘No No (Feat.…)’”.

As impressive as Sunkanmi’s comeback seems, we are sometimes too aware of the presence of the sound engineers and producers. Producer tags chased mixer tags relentlessly. While it’s an important business practice to place ads (tags), it would have done this project a world of good if engineers didn’t add tags everywhere. We kept hearing “phantom…phantom” like it was some deliberate songwriting effort. 

Upon final analysis, it’s important to notice that Sunkanmi’s project is a blend of genres at heart, and genre-bending can only be guaranteed by combining great production with a thirst for experimentation. Sunkanmi does both with aplomb and Body Language is a great result!

Adanna O

Written By

I will stan Waje, Omawunmi and Tiwa till my legs can’t take it anymore.

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