The word Songbird I think best describes Simisola, this petite damsel who has wowed the continent with her singing prowess. She has started this hustle long ago but nationwide popularity came with the song JAMB Question, which almost everybody related to. The remix with frequent collaborator and suspected boyfriend, rapper Falz was such a hit. It was that song that propelled her to nationwide fame. Her tiny, soothing voice, with an astute sense of lyricism still proves to be her selling point after the numerous singles she’s released. People have been clamouring for an album, and here it is. The SIMISOLA album.
1. REMIND ME : She is singing in this angelic voice, stating her flaws and asking to be reminded how to love in the first verse. This piano playing, God! Epic. Simi’s lyrical composition beats every other of her female counterparts. Hands down. Oscar on the beat. This is great, yo. Short and leaves us wanting for more.
2. JOROMI : Pre-released and seems to be pushed out as the hit of the album. Groovy song. Bears no semblance to the Victor Uwaifo classic.
3. AIMASIKO : This is Fuji. The drums are good. She’s telling us to have faith in God. This is gospel-driven. The hook is something I have heard before. A popular Yoruba gospel song. This sounds like a beat first given to Adekunle Gold. I can only imagine ‘Oya na’ sung from the depths of these drums. Solid.
4. COMPLETE ME : Imagine if Fela ever sang a love ballad, tuning down his Afrocentricity and madness for a second. Oscar. This guy is good. God! Simi has voice. Simi can sing. Simi writes like a sage. Simi should just sell lyrics to Rihanna if she ever decides to quit singing. ‘No one completes you more than me.’ She sings to her lover.
What’s a heart without a beat? This beat has gradually eased into soft fuji. This album came with a lot of drums.
5. GONE FOR GOOD : She’s telling a story. A returnee lover. He brings back memories and she wishes he never returned. We always have that person from the past that threatens to crack open the wounds that have mended over time. This acoustic offering melds so perfectly into the emotions in Simi’s voice.
6. ORIGINAL BABY : Reggae feel. Trumpets. Drums. Keyboard. Simi enters into this seamlessly. ‘Money don’t drive me, I drive my money.’ Simi gives no fucks on this. She’s preaching originality. Preach, baby!
7. ONE KAIN : Pop. Song for a night of drinks. A guy’s looking at her one kain. She’s shy? She does look the shy type. This song is laid back and the beat transcends genres but Simi is so Nigerian that garri makes the cut.
8. TAKE ME BACK (Ft. Adekunle Gold) : Only collab on the album. No Forget for me, didn’t live up to expectations. The song starts with a guitar riff. This beat makes good setting for this story. Take me back, she says. Home? The guitar is great. Mr. Adekunle is great on this, his verse is short. He trades a back and forth with Simi. Kunle, stop forming and take her back. One of the best songs on the album. This beats No Forget. I’ll be coming back to this.
9. O WA N’BE : The famed Yoruba craze for parties. Trust Simi to talk about it. The sound is upbeat. You have to move to this. She namedrops King Sunny Ade and Olamide. Come to think of this, the YBNL honcho would bless this perfectly. I see radio potential in this.
10. SMILE FOR ME: In my opinion, Simi’s best song. Ever. But hey, I won’t fight Hulk Hogan. Even for you.
11. ANGELINA: This is another reggae offering. She’s threatening her cheating lover. She has to let him go. He cheated on her with Angelina. Why does this beat scream for a Patoranking or Burna Boy?
12. HIP HOP HUYYAY : Feel good jam. Hip Hop Yuyyah! This is the song for a laid back Friday with the homies. Feel good. Feels good. Sounds good. Sounds nothing like Hip Hop but then, maybe just Hop your Hips?
BONUS TRACKS : Love Don’t Care, JAMB Question, Tiff. (You’ve all grooved this.)
Early Favorites : Remind Me, Original Baby, Take Me Back, Smile For Me.
Not so Early Favorites: Joromi, Aimasiko, O wa N’be
VERDICT : The self titled SIMISOLA album is a solid take on who this young lady is. Fearless. Unapologetic. Lover. Halfway into the album, I wondered if her themes were not shallow then I realized, this is her. She isn’t a political artiste. She is Simisola. She wants to explore love and heartbreak. This album works. Its brevity works. One or two more features were needed however. Still, solid from the Songbird.