Records like ‘Roses’ and ‘Everything’ are more optimistic than the morose or critical outlook of the other tracks.
Alpha Ojini has been grinding. At some point, he juggled life as a teacher at a Lagos secondary school and rap music. Then, he decided to ‘Focus’ on life as a sound engineer. Over the past four years, he has released three albums; Half Price, Chvmeleon and now Tears Are Salty For A Reason.
While his first two albums had intermittent commercial offerings, chief of which was ‘Calm Down,’ which housed a GoodGirl LA masterclass, ‘Tears Are Salty For A Reason’ remains his most commercially viable project. While a record like ‘Roses’ featuring Maka isn’t exactly Afro-pop, it’s Afro-infused.
The music seems like a product of IKON-powered Show Dem Camp or The Collectiv3: a touch of R&B, blended with Afro-centric percussion and BPM. Eccentric and an acquired taste, the music is a rollercoaster of thematic emotions, as Ojini creates a backdrop of sadness.
Morose and reflective; confident inflections; this is Ojini’s most vulnerable moment as an artist yet.
By way of love, sadness, pain, heartbreak, marriage, Ojini tells the story of his adult life, as a Nigerian man.
For the first time, he uses ‘Odeshi’ to open up about the events surrounding his mom’s death in his teenage years. But on a larger note, the record offers a ‘fly on the wall’ perspective about the African man and expressing emotions, as it relates to the larger topic of toxic masculinity.
Records like ‘Roses’ and ‘Everything’ are more optimistic than the morose or critical outlook of the other tracks. They document love as Ojini looks forward and dreams big. But even those records exude a subtle dose of sadness. It feels like Ojini is positive, despite knowing that those dreams are unlikely to come true.
Regardless, Ojini sees himself as a ‘Husband Material,’ who deserves all the best love and loyalty from his partner. ‘Namaste’ also offers some succour, solace and consolation; albeit an invitation to look forward, from the lips of Tomi Owo.
While he created a moment with his freestyle series across 2020 and 2021, to reflect his strides and earned stripes, he has taken a step forward as an overall artist, capable of excelling at a variety of music.
When all is said and done, ‘Namaste’ should have been the last track on this EP.
Themes and Delivery: 1.7/2
Enjoyability and Satisfaction: 1.6/2