This was meant to be a Nines album review

Imoh Ekpo

By Imoh Ekpo

Imoh Ekpo

22 Feb 2017

If you haven’t been living under a rock this past week you’d have noticed that Nines dropped possibly the most highly anticipated album of the past year- “One foot out.” Having announced the project just over a year ago, on an interview with SBTV, excitement from the UK was almost uncontrollable when the track list and cover for the Nina’s debut album were revealed a week prior to the release date.  I have no shame in telling you that track to track I have listen to the album at least 12 times and it has met and surpassed all expectations. The album was streamed over a million times on Spotify and entered the official U.K album charts at number 4. Sitting above big hitters such as Adele and The weeknd.

Cover for Nines “One foot out”

Like is the norm when Albums are released, premature and downright awful album reviews follow soon after. There is no possible way that one can fully understand the theme of an album and what the Artist is trying to communicate to the listener after one or two listens. Sure, you’d get the general concept of it, but do you understand it? Do you get how this fits into the wider picture of the Artist’s discography? I like to think of projects as checkpoints in life. A project should capture a certain point of current times or a certain point of an artist’s life. No two projects should ever be the same as time is not static, time moves on and so does life. With the better artists, you can clearly see the growth in their work.

I’m not comfortable with writing an Album review for “one foot out” just yet, as I don’t feel I’ll do it justice at this point in time. The album is excellent and for me to describe to you just how great it is, I need more time, so I can properly understand the contrasts and the connections between his latest project and his previous discography.

If an album review is something you absolutely must see today, I’ll direct you to one from one of the major music publications, The Fader. Although I’ll have to warn you it’s not a very good one.

The Fader’s generic outline of “one foot out” does not even begin to scratch the surface of the depths of the album. And is the perfect example of a review for a reviews sake, without any actual appreciation for the body of work. It’s tells us what everybody else can see, we know why it’s called one foot out mate. That whole generic voice of the streets rubbish that they use for every rapper from the hood that does well is clear to see in the article. It is very well written as you would expect from an author of a major publication like The Fader, but in terms of actual substance- as a review of an album that so many people have waited for the best part of a year to be released, it’s pathetic.

There are just so many unexplored themes. There’s no mention of his relationship with law enforcement, which he dedicated a mini skit to in the middle of track 7 “Stacey Adams.” Neither is there any mention of his jibes at the opposition, the “Paigons,” who he sends shots for throughout the Album. “If I signed a record deal, I still ain’t laying down my weapon, P**sy.” This is widely thought to be a shot at USG counterpart K-koke, who was once signed to American rapper Jay-Z’s record label, Roc-Nation. A major theme that was left out of The Fader’s review is the conscious side Nines shows on the track “I wonder” ft. Akala, who’s skit at the end is amazing by the way. Nines relationship with women is also left untouched and unexplored, I mean really? Track 8 ft. Triggs Da Author is called “Hoes” for crying out loud. This review is left wanting in so many ways.

The one thing The Fader did do right was highlight his lack of support from the mainstream outlets on his incredible journey so far. In the words of The Fader “zero support from mainstream radio and almost no coverage in traditional media outlets.” Ironically enough if you were to search up Nines on the search bar of The Fader’s website only two posts appear. One of the posts is an announcement that his “High Roller” video with J Hus had dropped. The other? A sorry excuse of a review for an excellent album, but a review none the less. Here’s the link, enjoy.