Opinion: The thorny issue of Kenyan rap addressed

Opinion: The thorny issue of Kenyan rap addressed

Two wrongs don’t make a right, but don’t three lefts make a right? Two wrongs don’t make a right but don’t two negatives make a positive?

With every blink of the eye, with every toss of the coin, and with every turn and toss on the bed, Kenyan music, to be particular-hip hop is being hit with an idiot-sized kamikaze and its now tumbling almost falling headlong to its rock bottom.

Octopizzo steps in as a blessing to the rap industry. I won’t be far off the truth when I say Octopizzo is the only rapper who moves a nerve to make sure he goes against one of the biggest storms to ever shake Kenya rap industry.

For the most part, Octopizzo got an amazing firepower of flow, delivery, lyricism, writing, production and beats. He blends this artistically in a way that made LDPC top iTunes. In case you don’t know, Octopizzo way of rap is part of the human design.

Rap has always revolved around the traditional topic of pussy, money, weed and crime. I know truth is like surgery however much it might hurt it cures, so I’ve decided to give you my point of view. You see, every established rapper is different. And none of them is perfect. Not even Pac. But it’s quite easy to weed out chaff from the useful grain, separating the real from the fake and having an even shorter list of almost perfect rappers. For me, as far as Kenyan music is concerned, Octopizzo is an almost perfect rapper. He delivers the money, weed and crime topic in the best unimaginable way with a different sound. Some may not want to talk about how good he is, but his music will never lie, he’s consistent, more diverse as an artist and he literally has more than a million flows.

It was last week when I sat contented on a chair and cranked the volume up, listening to a playlist in kiss 100. Kaligraph songs come in and when the hook-“kama unanoma… “Vibrates my eardrum confusion set on my face and I would be lying if I say that I wasn’t internally cursing at how weak and cliché the lyrics are. I remember shooting up from the chair, dropping my phone which had been glued to my fingers a mere moment ago and ran towards the woofer, switched it off bewilderingly.

What makes Octopizzo music brutally outdo Khali is the fact that Octopizzo is a better story teller; this is no doubt supported by his songs, black star and eight. From the way he talks about his life back when he was a toddler then he proceeds to expose his onset of puberty and how he stepped his rap foot forward captures us in a bubble of attention. The way he displays the shift of fate from bad to good makes him beat the living daylights out of all the African rappers. Remember how he talked about girls turning him to a laughing stock and boys ignoring him as if he was an invisible? When he comes and rap again on verse 3 of black star, his priorities have changed, shifting fate from bad to good, mentioning how his music colors the radio station and how Gucci pants gave him the first butterflies of having designer clothes.

My instincts tell me that subject matter is vital in rap, and on top of that Octopizzo uses it appropriately by rapping about fascinating and interesting things. In his latest album “next year”, his songs like monopoly and NU Africa prove to strike a chord with most people because they have an interesting subject matter. In monopoly he condemns laziness in marriage in a way that you can’t overlook. NU Africa seems to make the listener feel inspired and can help regulate emotions by just listening to the hook itself. His not using the same subject matter over and over again crowns him the king of hip hop today, tomorrow and even beyond forever.

If Octopizzo success had a pulse it would be nestled somewhere in his lyrical ability to deliver conscious rap without much of technicality.

Consider this lyrics “bila jembe I know you dig it>si wahindi but I know you singing>si election I know you rigging>si erection nko steady”

Octopizzo uses a tinge of technicality by having acute obscure references.

He doesn’t fancy his language with big words like other cliché rappers. After all rap isn’t about how many big words you can rhyme rather it’s all about how lyrical your phrases struck the listener in the most appropriate way.

When talking about lyrics you’ll be a bit of a crack head comparing Khali to Octopizzo which is just mean. In fact this argument is so premature in my opinion. The parallels are abundantly easy to see and that’s why I don’t mention Khaligraph in the same sentence as Octopizzo.

The 8town rapper lyrical skills remain unmatched in the rap community. His rhymes and lyrics are some of the clever and complex rhymes to ever be put on paper, and he can freestyle with a matched excellence to that of Big L.

 In my opinion Octopizzo has made his success a fortress with its walls never to be crumbled down by anything whatsoever.


Martin Olage

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