Album - ThutoArtiste - Cassper NyovestRecord Label - Family Tree (2017)Duration - 70 minutes

He has it all. Cassper Nyovest has it all; money (check), respect (check), power (check), love (check), talent (check) and everything else (still check).

Since his first release, Cassper Nyovest has achieved growth in the direction that only few acts in Africa can aspire to. Building his core base amongst the youth of the South Africa and extending that influence via strategic collaborations with other African acts. And as the voices from Johannesburg made the claim for a monopoly of the continent’s Hip hop, Cassper was in front of line, serving as both the grafter and model.

Cassper’s success resonates amongst the youths because of his story. He is just like one of them, and if he could make it, anyone of them can. That’s why they all came out to fill the Orlando Stadium in 2016.

“Thuto” is a celebration of that power, and the offering of new music. Frankly, it is Cassper Nyovest’s best album yet. Where “Tsholofelo” and “Refiloe” had complaints due to the lack of a cohesive song flow, “Thuto” nails that, with progression on every single.

On the first half of the album, Cassper sticks to his keys, opening up his heart with introspective lines, and deep conversations backed by warm basslines and crisp snares and kicks. He shines with this format, laying out his vulnerabilities on opener ‘Confused’. (“But I won’t lie, man, success has its downfall. The new nigga will always excite the crowd more”)

‘I wasn’t ready for you’ has to take the prize for ‘Most Emotional Song’ on the album. Cassper opens his heart about a past relationship which failed because of him. It was all his fault he was inadequate fir a perfect lover, who he disappoints repeatedly until her flames died. (“I look myself in the mirro, like ‘Dawg, what happened to you?/ You told this woman you loved her, and you promised her joy/ She just needed a man, you behaved like a boy.”)

The mid-point of the conceptual album has to be ‘Nyuku’, on which he inspires sentiments of solidarity with the most authentic genesis of organic South African Hip Hop back in the Yizo Yizo days.

From here it’s all aspirational music and its very loud friends. The bottles pop, the air is scented, and the cars are amazing, the champagne is always flowing, and the money is stacked. Backed by 808s he dives in hard on hedonism and braggadocio. ‘Baby girl’, ‘Ngýekeleni’, and ‘Touch the sky’ all sit in this spot.

“Thuto” album shows all the sides of Cassper Nyovest as South Africa’s leading Hip hop voice. He is grounded in his thoughts and expectations, but flies high with his talent. This is a new high in his career, and as the tours for this project begin, there is bound to be a line of people, long enough to fill the biggest venues, waiting to experience this project as live art.

Rating: 4/5


1-Dull2-Boring2.5-Average3-Worth Checking Out3.5-Hot4-Smoking Hot4.5-Amazing5-Perfection