On 'Orin Dafidi (Psalms),' Qdot offers an improvement on 'Alagbe' [Pulse Album Review]

On his second body of work, which was originally released exclusively on Boomplay, Qdot is much improved.

Qdot - Orin Dafidi. (Boomplay)

Qdot is possibly Nigeria’s ‘peekaboo’ act. He flirts with the mainstream, producing hits of his own, but has struggled to shake off tags like ‘underrated’ or ‘underground.’ A lot of that has to do with him and his representation in the media.

That’s partly his fault though, because talent isn’t enough. You have to have a representation in the media. And that can still be fixed.

He’s respected by Nigerian music lovers and artists alike. His talent reverberates deserving accolades. His vocals are distinct from Ijala, Fuji, Rara or Apala singers, but with the cadences and technique of a white garment gospel act. His music also comes with relatable content, delivered in Yoruba.

While that could be an impediment to enjoying his music for non-Yoruba, the proverbs, slangs and adlibs in his music are best delivered in Yoruba and Yoruba alone. In 2020, he released his belated debut album, Alagbe. The album title is an ode to his brand of Yoruba music, Agbe. Singers of this genre sound something like Qdot.

Thus, the tag ‘Alagbe.’ While the album had some production, length and engineering deficiencies, it produced impressive records like ‘Iba’ and ‘Moriamo.’ Both records were filled with resonant first-person stories. In a way, Qdot was like a Hip-Hop/Agbe act like 9ice - who is one of his heroes. In fact, ‘Moriamo,’ which is an ode to his grandmother, mirrors 9ice’s ‘Anytime,’ an ode to his grandmother.

Like 9ice, Qdot has the technique of a Hip-Hop act, who is adaptable to any genre. This makes him seamlessly dominate any beat. For this, he’s like a bridge between an Alagbe, 9ice, a rapper and Terry Apala. On the one hand, he can flow alongside Davido on ‘Sare,’ which is a response to the failing tactics of his detractors.

But he can also rub shoulders with Moelogo on ‘Wahala.’ His sophomore EP, Orin Dafidi provides a nod to his Church leanings, which formed the basis of his breakout single. ‘Orin Dafidi’ is Yoruba for the book of Psalms in the bible. This EP isn’t just a concept EP and a nod to his Christian leanings as an artist, topics addressed on the EP also follow a similar concept to the book of Psalms in the bible.

‘Gratitude’ and ‘Owo(money)’ are self-explanatory; ‘Desperate Journey’ tells a failed picture-esque japa story of Qdot and his friends, Bola, Tobi, Adefuyi, Bolaji, Adekola and Kazeem. Someone assured them of landing in America, but without a visa. But when they got to Kano State, Qdot pulled a tantrum and got off the bus. If that doesn’t sound like a story from the book of Psalms, I don’t know what does.

‘Lyrical’ is more like a tale of braggadocio with the help of rappers. It’s another testament to Qdot’s versatility. ‘Duro’ is another version of a previously released love song, featuring superstar Simi.

On his second body of work, which was originally released exclusively on Boomplay, Qdot is much improved. At seven tracks, it’s concise. And the pitfalls of length, engineering and production which negatively affected ‘Alagbe,’ are curtailed. 'Owo' is slightly cliche though.

However, the sound engineering on ‘Orin Dafidi’ is still not A1. The mix on ‘Lyrical’ and ‘Sare,’ particularly stick out like a sore thumb. On other tracks, there is also an imbalance of vocals versus production. On ‘Sare,’ the production is also slightly short on needed chord progression.

Nonetheless, ‘Duro 2.0’ and ‘Sare’ have immense potential as singles, while ‘Desperate Journey’ is a well-told story.

Ratings: /10

• 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

6.9 - Victory

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