Her latest project ‘More’ comes at a time when Nigerian mainstream music is enjoyable a commercial boom built on the hard work of artists including Omawumi whose efforts advanced Afrobeats.
For ‘More’, the sensational vocalist offers brilliant pieces of herself across different genres as she crafts easily enjoyable music that appeals to listeners across all demographics.
On ‘More’, Omawumi demands better from relationships both romantic and personal. She prays for more from a higher power who has guided her steps and has continued to bring her success. And she demands more from the leaders who have consistently failed to deliver on their promises. And more consciousness from a sleepy population.
In 2009, late era-defining rapper Da Grin featured Omawumi on ‘Thank God’ which would be one of the biggest songs off his critically acclaimed album ‘C.E.O’. 14 years later, Omawumi crafts another ‘Thank God’ built on the same mindset of gratitude as her hit collaboration with Da Grin. The Afrobeats Gospel record infuses the soundscape defining Log drums to add familiarity that will appeal to mainstream sensibilities.
One of the finest voices in Nigerian R&B, Omawumi rolls back the years on sensational R&B cut through spellbound vocals and stellar delivery that emphasizes her desire for more. She recruits Trap rap star Psycho YP to bring his new school appeal to the American-styled R&B more where she asks for more from a slacking lover.
On the Afrobeats R&B cuts with fellow female superstar Yemi Alade they roll back the years for a dated record that throws listeners back to the Afrobeats sound that dominated the early 2010s. And on ‘YOLO’, she infuses indigenous call and response style melody over quintessential Afrobeats arrangement for a feel-good record where she combines with fellow veterans Timi Dakolo & Cobhams Asuquo to sing about the good life.
An R&B star, Omawumi has consistently shown her stellar vocals across multiple genres, and on ‘More’ she dazzles across Dancehall, Highlife, and Folk records. On ‘Try’, where she addresses the disappointment and hurt from a relationship that doesn’t offer her enough to stick around, she flexes her vocals on a Reggae record where her breathtaking adlibs outshine her brilliant writing.
She explores Flamenco fused with Jazz horns and Highlife strings on ‘No Be Play’, where she calls on a higher power to ease her worries. On ‘Fear’, she is the most defiant on the album as she faces her adversity head on this Gospel styles record where her harmonies, delivery, arrangement, and backup vocals take the music to Church.
An Omawumi album cannot be complete without a didactic touch and she offers this in ‘Auzubillah’ where she mocks the politicians who recycle the same fake promises every four years to a helpless and gullible population.
Overall, ‘More’ offers the impressive type of music Omawumi is famous for while having something for every listener. And while she might have stayed in her comfort zone, it’s a zone only few can explore, and this is what makes her a special artist.
Songwriting, Themes, and Delivery: 1.5/2
Enjoyability and Satisfaction: 1.5/2