Note to music journalists and aspiring writers, it’s never too late to cover and support music. After finally meeting the incredibly gifted musician a couple of days ago at a event in London, I promised myself I would cover his most recent EP MELANALIA, despite it coming out in February this year. It has low-key been one of my favourite releases of the year, and this is why.
Firstly, Afronaut Zu has one of the most distinct voices in the UK right now. The slight raspiness in his voice makes him a powerful and unique singer, someone who conveys his message with conviction and incredible soul. This can be heard all over MELANALIA, especially on tracks such as “REUNION OF THE MELAMARTIAN CRUISE UNIT” and “Martians,” where he shows his vocal range and sheer power, giving the tracks such life and character. The groove-centric instrumentals throughout make the tone of this album upbeat and again, quite lively. The trap sound of “THE MELANIN” featuring CHRISTOPHER BLXCC, LEVI & SHREDDA shows his diversity as a lyricist as well, which is something I have grown to love about him. His feature on Billy Dukes’ new album The Intervention was my favourite, and with all due respect to Intalekt & Geefree, he completely stole the spotlight and made the song his own. Going back to MELANALIA, the tribal tones on “OH MY GOD” and “NEW AGE ZOMBIE” are just an incredible vibe, and “DARK MARTIAN” closes the project with a R&B-esque vibe that again highlights Zu’s incredible vocal strength.
So, in short MELANALIA is one of my favourite projects to come out this year and you need to support this man in everything he does because it’s genius. Catch him featured on Dizzee Rascal’s new song “Patterning Vibez,” from his new EP Don’t Gas Me. Listen to Afronaut Zu’s MELANALIA EP below via Spotify and once again, make sure you support.