SOMEWHERE BETWEEN BEAUTY & MAGIC (JOEBOY)

RELEASED 3RD FEBRUARY 2021

Favourite track: Show Me

This album is soooo chill and will have you moving and vibing to his vocals without you even realising.

This was the first time I had heard of Nigerian artist, Joeboy, but I was keen to listen to his 14-track album Somewhere Between Beauty & Magic as the title of the album just drew me in, not to mention the peaceful image of him sitting on top of a huge rock by a body of water. Joeboy has become more and more popular, specialising in Afro-Pop and RnB music so I was already interested to see what this project would sound like.

Image credit: Twitter

The first track ‘Count Me Out’ begins with deep bass, some brass and smooth vocals before tremolo strings and a chill beat. The vocal work is really nice and it’s one you can move to but it’s also relaxing, and all the instruments work well together. ‘Focus’ opens very atmospherically and then bursts into a deeper beat and bass to add a steady rhythm which compliments the flow of the vocals which have this catchy, upbeat quality to them. The production is great and it picks up in the right places and slows down in others. ‘Number One’ this one has those African drums, dream guitar and warm synths. You really can dance to all of these but they have a super laid-back feel to them – good vibes only. ‘Police’ switches it up a bit with a dis-jointed beat and more chaotic rhythm before it suddenly fixes into place and smooths out with accompanying vocals and vocal FX. The melody is pretty and it’s very RnB but with that African Pop influence running through. It’s the perfect marriage of sounds.

‘Door’ begins with guitar and then an Afrobeat rhythm. It takes you to a hot country with sand, dance and drinks. ‘Show Me’ changes it up again. We’ve got synth piano keys, African instruments and a HARD beat. I love this one. ‘Runaway’ opens with dream guitar with a more melancholic tone and then a slower beat. It’s romantic and each instrument conveys what his lyrics do too. ‘Lonely’ opens with echoing deep guitar and Afrobeat rhythm. It’s another romantic one but more upbeat this time. The chorus is veryyy catchy and shows off more vocal range. ‘Consent’ is one I feel I’ve heard before but not sure where. More solid beats, catchy chorus and warm vibes. ‘Oshe’ is slower but still dancy. The vocals are really nice here. ‘Oh’ picks it up again with a fast-paced rhythm and some synths. What he has included in nearly all of his songs is the presence of strings which adds this cinematic influence to the Afro-Pop and RnB.

I like the guitar melody in ‘Sugar Mama’ and then a deep bass and Afrobeat rhythm as usual with romantic vocals. It’s catchy and playful. ‘Better Thing’ begins with electric guitar and vocal ad-libs before the main lyrics. It’s a very smooth sound but keeps a steady pace and catchy style. The final track ‘Celebration’ definitely has this relaxed but upbeat quality. It’s very positive and makes for a nice ending to the album.

It’s hard to find faults as each song is just really well-produced and the vocals are so good. It’s the perfect album for a road-trip or beach party.