QUICK ALBUM REVIEW: Marcques – ALYVE

In the world of rap they say you’ve got your whole life to make your first album and that transparency is an ingredient for lasting success.

So it’s no surprise that Marcques’ solo début ALYVE took so long to compile. All these years he was, perhaps, looking for the right sound and gathering enough courage to share his life story. Now that the time is right ,it’s here : a brilliant and a bumping body of work that’s sure to give  him a shot at trying to be one of the greatest rappers ” alyve.’

Being a great MC in his own right, the host of talent involved with ALYVE is staggering. With a genre-hopping blend of instrumentals courtesy of Verseless mainly, he gives fans a glimpse into his relationships with his family, fiance(s),community and most of all himself. In his mind it is a confessional or a high-priced therapy session that name checks most of his issues.

Along with expected appearances of Miles and Verseless, features from Takura, Fluid, Tkae Chidz, ShashL ,Kito and Tinashe Makura  are sprinkled throughout the 14 tracks waxing eloquent of partying, the struggles of artistic integrity, transitions in life, family responsibility to more exalted subject of love and matters of the heart. With so much openness you can hear his passion through his journey in the difficult jungle of his upbringing on In Loving Memory and Hapasina Chinhu. On the later he bemoans the dearth of social basics in the home after his father decided to join the church ministry. Interesting about this song is that it does not point only to the crisis his immediate family is faces, but the general economic recession in the country and it’s toxic effects on the livelihood of people.

Besides its beautiful rhymes and vocals, it’s production is Marcques’ evolution into something more global. His beats typically carry heavy bass lines, colourful synths and prominent drums. Most of them are bolstered by live strings, soulful samples, jazz percussion and guitars giving them an orchestral feel. That fusion leads to a robust listening experience and Mood, Irreplaceable, and Tingadini are exceptional to this.

That said, the album is periodically let down.The juxtaposition of more soulful tracks with powerful and bitter wave-ridden- trap songs might jar fans somehow. This amalgamation of sounds rarely works as it presents different glimpses into two abstract worlds. Not that they don’t intermarry, but that it takes particular expertise and cautious thematic mastery for the two merge beautifully.

So, through it all, it’s an immense self-definitive début and it sounds like just the first chapter in what is sure to be a long and fascinating story. One of the best personal rap album you’ll hear in 2017.

Pickup tracks :

  • Negus Nagast (On A Low)
  • Handimbokurarise ft ShashL
  • Skat’ Sami

The album is yet to be available on online stores but there is an easy way to get it. Simply ECOCASH $5 to +263 777 205 639, send a screenshot of your confirmation message to the same number and the album will be sent directly to you via email or Whatsapp.

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