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A review of ‘Love Lane’ EP by Nigerian musician Dwin, The Stoic

With resonating vocals and beautifully molded melodies, Dwin & Rhaffy smoothly combine R&B, Folk, Pop, and Afrobeats for a refined process that retains an underlying thematic preoccupation.

While love is driven by desire, the burning passion must in turn be inspired by something. For some, it might be a need for completeness. It might be a need to conquer and possess. And for others, it might be reclination, fear, and even belief.

For Dwin, it appears to be a need for completeness. A need for a safe space. A place where guards can be laid down and true feelings can be explored. And he documents this desire in a way that makes listeners feel something.

When he embarks on self-evaluation and admits to taking too long to confess his love, drowning his pain in liquor, constantly missing the point, and needing rescuing from himself, this honesty resonates with the listeners whose emotions are equally tugged through his serenading duet with Efe Orka.

Even when he speaks French in ‘Allez’ the drums that glean from European folk music, the composition makes you feel something akin to what the spectators feel in stands of the great Roman Colosseum or the goosebumps derived from a packed out stands in a Champions league night.

Just as the music flows into each other, his thoughts also follow a similar stream as the pain of losing what could have been a perfect love story in ‘Allez’ echoes in the declarations of love in ‘Without Your Love’ where he undertakes to do what it takes to retain a love that has become the center of his world. The Afro-R&B melody combines with the strings and horns with a smooth backup that again makes listeners feel something.

The album explores Afrobeats sonics in ‘Streets’ and ‘Don’t Wait Up’ with the former being an Afropop record where he announces his readiness to quiet the streets with a lingo that resonates within Nigerian pop culture. The latter embraces Amapiano log drums where Dwin plays the Ladies’ man with Nigerian American rapper Kelechief who delivers adequate verse. Both records showcase the versatility required to make music for mass consumption within the Nigerian mainstream.

‘Love Lane’ EP comes together to capture a yearning for love through compositions that make listeners feel the music. The production combines with Dwin’s versatility allows for a rich incorporation of multiple genres within 5 tracks while also retaining significant African markers.

Overall, ‘Love Lane’ EP excels in rich artistry, elevated writing, and successful creative partnerships. For both existing and new listeners, it’s an appetizer of something more to come.

Songwriting, Themes, and Delivery: 1.6/2

Enjoyability and Satisfaction: 1.7/2

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