Monaky documents the realities of the average Nigerian in 'Patient Zero'
Monaky captures the different experiences of an average Nigerian in his debut album 'Patient Zero'.
Monaky is one artist taking years of musical influences to document the story of the average Nigerian experiences. When he made his debut in 2021 with the successful singles 'The Goat' & 'The Suitor', Monaky's music shined for its exciting sonic appeal that pointedly reminded listeners of Fela's Afrobeat, old-school rappers like DMX & Jarule, as well as a sonic texture and technique of Burna Boy. But beyond its sonic richness is storytelling that paints a vivid picture.
With his debut album 'Patient Zero', Monaky uses his unique style of music to tell the story of the different realities of average Nigeria. "I like to use my music for storytelling and my album is meant to do the talking for me," Monaky tells Pulse Nigeria when asked about his absence from the scene and his decision to return with his debut album.
To tell the stories of average Nigerian experiences, one must tell them from the perspective of life on the street. This type of music has endured in Afrobeats as the reality of the streets has formed the bulk of the content of Afrobeats and while the word streets have been largely restricted to Lagos because of its position as the country's social and economic capital, other artists have unique experiences that comes with their respective locale.
For Monaky, his reality was formed from his experiences in Benin City Edo State and these elements come to the fore in his music. In 'Patient Zero' Monaky captures the struggle of making it in a country that takes more than it gives. In 'Update', he confesses to finding new ways to make it in a society where individuality and desperation are at an all-time high.
In the swaggering Swing record 'Payroll', with new school rap leader Psycho YP, Monaky expresses the importance of money in the current society in a way that captures why it's the predominant theme in most everyday conversations.
He tells the story of a street-smart hustler through slang like "holding my Google map even in a convoy" to capture his savviness while also emphasizing his silent smart moves by comparing himself to former Kano State Governor and 2023 Presidential candidate Rabiu Kwankwanso.
He captures faith and belief in a higher power in 'Final Destination' where he talks about the overflowing nature of God's blessing as he delivers smooth lines in an Afrobeat and Pop hybrid.
In the face of unending struggles, there's always time for celebration and the pursuit of romance, and he captures this through the feel-good song 'House Party' and the party starter 'After Party', and 'Achilles' with fast-rising sensation Layzee Ella.
On 'Patient Zero', Monaky fuses his identity of Afrobeat and Hip Hop with mainstream Pop elements in Amapiano and quintessential Afrobeats. His use of Kwankwanso and UEFA combines with his effortless deployment of street slang to bring the music to average Nigerians for whom it was crafted and whose story it tells.
His hitmaking credentials shine on 'The Plug' which combines catchy writing, swaggering delivery, and sensational melodies for what many will consider the best song on the album.
Monaky closes out the album with a chest-thumping track that paints a picture of the quintessential Nigerian self-belief, confidence, and resilience even in the face of struggles.
Like many before him who have used their music to not only entertain but also tell relatable stories that uplift its gratification, Monaky has struck an impressive balance while adding his unique touch to the art.
• 0-1.9: Flop
• 2.0-3.9: Near fall
• 4.0-5.9: Average
• 6.0-7.9: Victory
• 8.0-10: Champion
Pulse Rating: /10
Album Sequencing: 1.6/2
Songwriting, Themes, and Delivery: 1.6/2
Enjoyability and Satisfaction: 1.5/2
Total: 7.8 - Victory
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