VIBE Album Review: 7 things we learned from the YBNL Mafia Family album

Olamide, his new signees and other YBNL affiliates dropped the anticipated YBNL Mafia Family album on Friday December 14th to the delight of longtime fans of the label. Following the success of acts like Lil Kesh and Adekunle Gold, YBNL is no stranger to newcomers with star power. Here are 7 things that we learned from the album featuring artists like Kranium, Kizz Daniel, Lil’ Kesh, Limerick and new YBNL signees Yomi Blaze, Picazo and Fireboy.

  1. Pheelz is everyone’s daddy. Save for three songs, the entire album was produced by long time YBNL producer Pheelzonthebeat. He delivered on all fronts and provided both lively and mellow instrumentals to highlight both new and old YBNL sounds. From Oke Suna to Macaroni, he showed his range without compromising on his signature style.

2. Picazo is a potential fave. One thing is clear on this album; Picazo has talent and personality. His authenticity shines through on the viral Macaroni and Fire Down. He managed to hold his own going toe to toe with Olamide and provides refreshing energy. We can’t wait to see what he has in store.

3. Fireboy is the Adekunle Gold/Nonso Amadi Hybrid that we’ve been waiting for. With a unique voice that was virtually created for great hooks, Fireboy draws us in throughout this album. On I’ll be Fine, he narrates the universal struggle of the upcoming artist and gives us some much needed lyrical content. He comes even harder on Fire Down as he shows his versatility and an impressive signature style for someone so early in their career. He virtually steals the album with Lele Yi and leaves us with no doubts about his abilities.

4. Olamide the rapper > Olamide the singer. Send Her Money was not the best for a song with so much star power. It was clearly lackluster in comparison with other tracks on the album.

5. Poverty Die is a jam whether or not we want to admit it. Even though it came under initial criticism, Poverty Die is undeniably infectious. It is also so relatable that it is almost impossible not to scream out “Poverty die!!” in unison with Olamide.

6. Lil Kesh hasn’t lost it. Though he’s had a relatively quiet year, Lele Yi shows us that he still has the same hit-making potential (especially when paired with talents like Fireboy).

7. Yomi Blaze is a breath of fresh air. He is an actual rapper, reminiscent of a young Reminisce. He has a very nice, mature flow and could possibly be the new-school, hardcore Yoruba rapper that the industry has been waiting for.

This album gave us the YBNL energy that we have come to love and introduced us to several new talents. We are excited to see what the team has in store for 2019.

VIBE Rating: 8/10

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