Words by: Kishan Ramsamy | http://kishmeister.net/
With an artwork piece that speaks a series of thoughtful metaphors through the picture of a person blindfolded in front of an enlightened book, Akala graces us with the ‘Knowledge Is Power’ mixtape. Following on from his outstanding last album ‘Double Think’, one of the finest UK rappers, comes through with more music that is wrapped up in heart and deep meaning on this recently released project.
No time is wasted at the start of this compelling mixtape, with his legendary Fire In The Booth session for Charlie Sloth’s radio show. A mighty demonstration of Akala’s intense lyricism and blazing flow.
The knowledge and philosophy is an exceptional theme with absorbing lyrics throughout the mixtape. ‘Absolute Power’ is my best joint, striking a sensitive balance with a melancholic hook and articulate verses of anguish, with the mellow delivery keeping you transfixed to every bar.
There are strong contrasting moments through two stand out tracks: ‘I’m So Cool’ [produced by Engine Earz] showcasing bars laced up with urgency to an understated and chilled electro beat – and ‘Are You An MC’, powering through with spirited flows on a rapid pace and a feature from Durrty Goodz. And major credit to Akala for flipping the symphony inspired sample on the title track at the end, galvanised off those cinematic vibes for immense, expressive lyrics.
The articulate content and rhymes run deep throughout the mixtape, which resonates with the soul and hits some uncomfortable home truths about ourselves as individuals and society at large, if we’re being honest. With a negative, disposable and destructive music landscape that does its best to surround the masses, we depend on artists like Akala to use their platform to combine wisdom and fresh Hip Hop, to produce long lasting and profound music, which this mixtape has most definitely established its place amongst.
About the author:
I’m a passionate music head born and bred in London, spend excessive hours listening to music and going to gigs! Music is definitely my life and soul. I’ve blogged for Lovesoul.tv, Niksquared.com, BSomebody.tv and have contributed articles for the online interactive Hip Hop portal 16 Bars Magazine, and for Globetronica (Pathaan’s online magazine). My personal site is: http://kishmeister.net/