“Lagum got the boom and its finna go down…” sung Ivory Namara on “The Storm.”
This was the first time I ever heard of Lagum. What did I think? I was quite impressed. He sounded different. He was a breath of fresh urban air.
Fast forward to 2017; he recently dropped “Nuevo” a well created, well organized and an unusually broaden mixtape. ”
‘Nuevo’ is a Spanish word meaning ‘new’ thetribeug.com
“Nuevo” is a quintessential kind of urban UG Hip Hop. It is not an entirely fresh sound especially if you listen to a lot of US ‘new skool’. Then again, those are the trendsetters and when someone like Lagum replicates a trending style of music and owns it, credit is due.
It’s difficult to appreciate what Lagum did with this project if you are the type that expects a style to be replicated the exact way it was invented. Maybe sometimes it should, but not today. The songs on the mixtape sound familiar. The familiarity is skillfully altered to sound like something you know but still like very much thus you are pleased to hear it.
The 13 track mixtape has Lagum deeply exploiting every bit of his skill. From the writing, the production, the beats and the delivery, this is a project that was created drawing inspiration from a lot of apparent places. Each song is different but they all bear that familiarity I mentioned. If you listen punctiliously you’ll find that some songs remind you of a certain song; which is not entirely a bad thing.
The flow and delivery are without question in the top 2 in the business right now, – playing a back and forth with Tucker HD’s for the top spot. Speaking of which, track 9 “Wins” features Tucker HD and Tucker sounds like a reminder that the ‘Dark Knight’ is still looming in the shadows. Sick with the flow, punchlines well distributed, the braggartly performed verse sounds like the Tucker we ought to respect (and fear – word to competition)
Lagum is articulate, you hear every word the way it was intended to be pronounced. This is a compelling factor that makes you listen. As you listen, you have time to appreciate the thoughtful penning that went into the lyrics. The lyrics are storyteller type of lyrics. They give you something to think about. Not too many puns and punchlines to have you running around in amazement like a hooligan, they speak to your soul. This trait in our rappers is quite rare and it gives Lagum vantage.
We have Martha Smallz, Ruyonga, Matt Ngesa and several other artists feature on this mixtape. This selection gives the project an edge. An edge not many artists have quite mastered yet; Diversity. The singers blend their different genres and vocals in a glorious fashion and the seamlessness is utterly beautiful. A song titled “Commonly” is my favorite off this mixtape for precisely the above reasons. The perfection in the fusion of the two genres sends chills of approval all-over your body.
Verdict: As a whole, “Nuevo” is a good mixtape even though Lagum performs better than the music. He as an artist is more impressive than what he created for this project. The music is good, but when you get down to the man behind it, with an unwavering mind Lagum is a whole new level of skill, practice and mastery. However, one feels like he is yet to give us his best. He can do better than this. But so far, this is a more than adequate foundation for a memorable career.