Ibejii's "Post-19" is a wonderful project with few flaws [Pulse Album Review]

'Post-19' is an album that draws on palpable human emotions.

Post-19 Album Art

COVID-19 created a prolong moment of solitude where the idea of distance was felt like never before. This interminable lone time created a window where individuals engaged in a honest reflection as they saw the world grapple over limited resources and the social gap widen like never before. These reflections were engaged through unique individual lenses and each person emerged with peculiar recollections and lessons. Ibejii travelled through this window and emerged with Post 19 which is a COVID-19 inspired epiphany.

The album feels like a two-part diaristic sequence of musings. The opening three tracks are rounded off by 'Broken,' a tale of loss of a loved one, possible a parent. 'Blown' feels like a divider, then the final three tracks are subtly optimistic, or at least not so pessimistic. Equally, the music becomes slightly uptempo.

Even when 'Satila Shores,' a track inspired by Ahmaud Arbery's murder, the song is not a thematic paralytic. Sonically, 'Post 19' is a step away from Ilu Ilu, his last major release, which was heavily rooted in Nigerian Folk Music and Yoruba.

When a trip is made into the past with the knowledge of the present, and a consciousness of the future, the result is bound to inspire an evaluation of the past, a desire to appreciate the present, and a hope for the future. Ibejii's reflection of the past, present, and future is captured in the opening single 'Time,' an ephemeral, yet permanent concept.

That we are not going to be around forever, so we should all live a life worth remembering. That at the end of the day, time is the master of us all. That "time will kill us all."

An artistic display of Ibejii's connection of his roots, while still retaining the consciousness of the present, is captured by his deployment of English prose, laced with rich Yoruba intonation. 'Post 19' is a sonically therapeutic music calmly delivered through rich lyrics, that capture the philosophical musing of a man who has a lot on his mind.

It is an album that draws on palpable human emotions. Whether Ibejii is recollecting life lessons passed down to him by his father and passed down to his father by his grandfather, or he is saying a painful goodbye to a loved one, 'Post-19' echoes the thoughts that fills our mind when we are alone staring into space.

Purity of art is channeled by a honesty that doesn't bend to the need to impress an audience. With 'Post-19,' Ibejii achieves a purity of sound and content propelled through vulnerability and honesty.

Ibejii prides himself on his storying telling ability and his cinematic approach to his visuals. This artistic traits was displayed in the music video for his single 'Gonto' in which he featured the delectable Dakore Egbuson.

For an album so delicately put together that it's at risk of being dented by one meandering note or a misplaced string, the production of "Post-19" is exquisite. The organs and the strings combine to create a perfect sound. The use of reverb and the progression on 'Blown,' and 'Wild Horses' give the tracks a contemporary sound that straddles alternative, pop, and EDM.

Credit must also be given to Wavy the Creator, who rode on Ibejii's wave length on both tracks.

The last track, 'Home' captures the singular feeling that runs through all of mankind - the desire to return to peace where ever that maybe. Ibejii wishes to get away from the skyscrapers, the rat race, and the noisemakers.

It feels like the record was inspired by being stuck in a cosmopolitan city during the lockdown, which triggered a need to return home, where life is simple, where people are real, and where he doesn't have to keep looking over his shoulder. Of all the lessons COVID-19 left us, there's none more resounding than the lesson that there's no place like home, wherever or whomever that may be.

In terms of singing, Ibejii will remind many listeners of Brymo. If I should take the liberty, I will say Ibejii's employment of limited instrumental and singing pace on 'Post-19' reminds me of Lewis Capaldi. Either ways, Ibejii is a talented artist, set aside by his distinctive vocals and his cultural essence, which he doesn't hesitate to showcase.

When each track is weighed on their merit, they are exquisite. When weighed against each other as a body of work, they are a great track selection. Thematically, 'Post-19' achieves coherence and more importantly, conceptual astuteness. The production is perfect and the sound engineering is on point. Overall, it's a wonderful project.

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