Album Review: Seyi Shay – Seyi or Shay | A Solid Album To Stake A Claim As The Afro Pop Princess


Seyi Shay is a very unique artist in the Nigerian music industry, and that has been a good thing most times, other times not so great. Before her hit single, Murda, last year, the name Seyi Shay was very well known but not many could say why they knew the same so well. She’s had a very fascniating journey in music both in Nigeria and abroad, but it hadn’t translated directly to mainstream success in Nigeria. So with her debut album, Seyi or Shay, possibly the most important thing was to etch her name solidly in Nigerian music, and fix herself in an unmovable position.

If you ignore the somewhat unnecessary intro, the album kicks off with a solid introductory tune, The Mic. The first song on an album is always important, and Seyi Shay in 3:08 mins said what she was about, her journey, and her status right now. The rock/alternative sound makes it even more unique and fascinating, plus we get a taste of her singing ability that is showcased throughout the album. A+.

The album consists of good album cuts, In Public (with Cynthia Morgan), Mary (ft. Phyno), Healer (ft. Sound Sultan), No Vacancy, Loud (ft. Femi Kuti) and Higher. All of those are pretty good tunes for an album, and do well to carry the listening pleasure of the LP. On Mary, Higher, and In Public more especially you see the more international side of Seyi Shay. Both lyrically, and melodically. A break away from the generic afro pop sound is always very welcome.

The most applaudable song on the album, in my opinion, is Pack and Go (ft. Olamide). Yes we know about domestic violence, but how many artists actually put out songs on their albums about it. The idea is great, but the execution is also flawless, putting in a catchy hook, “Do I look like rihanna… I get beatz by dre, I no want beats by Chris, I go see you later”. The song shows that Seyi Shay’s maturity is a level above most of her peers.

Other outstanding tracks besides the pre-album hits (Murda ft. Patoranking & Shaydee, Crazy ft. WizKid and Jangilova), are Right Now, Church (ft. Boj), and Tina (ft. Dbanj). Finding the right track for a feature is a tricky thing, but she nailed it with the features for Boj, and Dbanj especially as it sounds like the song, Tina, was specially made for him. The highlife pop vibe of the song adds yet another dimension to the album.

Seyi or Shay is a 19 track project, but it really could’ve been cut down to about 15 or 16. Everlasting Love, Killing Me Softly (ft. Timaya), and Love Wan Tin Tin are very skippable songs that should’ve probably been cut before release. They really water down what could’ve been a shorter, sweeter listen.

Overall, Seyi or Shay is a very good album, and very impressive for a debut album. The project showcases everything there is to Seyi Shay. The varying genres, and producers keep it very fresh and entertaining. There might have been a tad bit too many features and experiments, but all made solid contributions to the project, and what’s a project without a little tinkering.

Seyi Shay has laid down a solid platform with this album, and the expectation is that this will catapult her to the top as we know she’s capable of achieving. Seyi or Shay is one hell of a pop album, and Seyi Shay is proving to be one hell of an Afro-Pop Artist.

Guest Appearances – Cynthia Morgan, Phyno, Sound Sultan, Wizkid, Olamide, Shaydee, Patoranking, Timaya, BOJ, Femi Kuti, D’banj, Iyanya, Banky W



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