Bella Shmurda’s Debut Album, ‘Hypertension’— A Definition of All Hits and No Misses

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Bella Shmurda is a superb musician that represents the Dangbana Republik, and his music is not only a conscious sound but also a synthesis of good vocals and culture, leaning primarily towards the Yoruba language as his choice of lyrics. He knows how to promote himself and the brand he represents. Bella Shmurda is one of those performers that stand out not just for his singing style but also for the clarity of his chords.

The musician gained notoriety when he released Vision 2020, and subsequent remix collaboration with one of Nigeria’s best street-hop artists, Olamide, propelled him to the pinnacle of the country’s afrobeats industry. The artist so far has released two EPs in quick succession over the last two years, High Tension the EP and High Tension 2.0(2020 and 2021, respectively)

His debut studio album, Hypertension, was only recently published, and the 15-track record is jam-packed with appearances from some of Nigeria’s most talented musicians, including purple boy Omah Lay, new sensation Victony, woman queen Simi, and Eastern rap superstar Phyno. Songs from his debut album depict love, life, and spirituality. You’re not expecting what Bella Shmurda had in store for us music lovers on this album.

His record is a leisurely build-up; rather than launching you in right away, it gradually braces you. By the third track, the album’s various melodies have you completely swept off your feet. His choice of features is likely one of the most outrageous ever; this writer never even in his wildest dreams imagined Bella Shmurda and Phyno collaborating together in Converse. Bella Shmurda snoozes through the song in the most basic Igbo and talks about love over the percussive beat in this harmonious blend of Igbo and Yoruba. The song’s flow by Phyno is nearly too flawless and smooth. The sizzling connection between both artists’ vocals is appealing, and there is a definite sense of sync between them. 

Bella Shmurda outdid himself on Loose it for someone who hasn’t dabbled in love songs all that much. The song’s inclusion of Simi was perhaps the finest thing that could have been done; although Simi gave the song a stronger sense of love, Bella Shmurda’s spiritual vocals in a deep, seething Yoruba smoothed it out, making it likely one of the best love-themed songs to be released in 2022.

You typically go above and beyond when featuring Omah Lay. Bella Shmurda features the purple boy in Philo, which has a slow-tempo groove and silky production that caresses your ears. The songwriting is pretty remarkable. The song, which was released before the release of Hypertension and contains sexual innuendos and love words, further demonstrates Omah Lay’s expertise of songwriting.

Pa Salieu begins Nakupenda with some brash bars before rhyming into Bella’s hook. Bella Shmurda also features L.A.X., and Not3s. The Swahili term for “I Love You,” Nakupenda, is in no way portrayed in the song in a sensuous way; all that is required to contradict the song’s title is the feature selection.

No Other features sensual Victony on it. The song is peppy, and the sweet nothings at the beginning of the song are a catchy part of the tune. The energetic song, which has “pon-pon” influences, features Bella Shmurda, whose vocal energy has been toned down to fit the musical mood. He sings about a woman and expresses his desire for just her.

Bella and Popcaan team up on the song’s final track, So Cold. The song leans more toward the dancehall sub-genre, and Popcaan gives it a flawless 10/10. The song’s flawless outro reveals Bella Shmurda’s ability to merge with any musician he encounters, regardless of their singing style.

The solo songs on the album are more enjoyable because of how catchy they are and the effort he makes to keep the listener interested from beginning to end. The album’s opening track, New Born Fela, explores a subtly blended crowd vocal quality through the interpolation of a well-known lyric from 9ice’s Gongo Aso. Before introducing you to Ase’s cheerful melody gradually, the song serves to acclimate the listener.

Bella Shmurda doesn’t claim to create conscious music for no legitimate cause, which is why he gives off the heavenly vibes that he does in his song. His prayerful singing of “you go build your mansion/you go do graduation” and the song’s refrain, “Ase,” is the ideal remedy for a downcast disposition.

When it comes to Contraband, Bella Shmurda reveals his genuine musical skill and perfection like a hurricane. Although the song has a lethargic tempo production, the artist’s persona is evident throughout.

Oh Oh Oh is without a doubt one of Hypertension’s best songs. The track is evident from the instrumentals to the way Bella’s vocals flow with the beat. Here, he uses crowd vocals, which only emphasized the song’s beauty. He begins by expressing how much peace a woman’s physique brings him before moving on to talk about money and finally love.

Lagos City may have been mistaken for a Juls production; the song brilliantly captures the lifestyle of Lagos as a bustling city; he talks about the wild lifestyle, the city, and the hustle that come with living in Nigeria’s social state, Lagos, in straightforward words. Bella sings compliments for Lagos in what appears to be an ode while the strings do the song more than enough justice.

So far, so good; Bella Shmurda’s entrancing introductions to each tune on his debut album prevent you from wanting to skip any. Simply put, FireLevel UpMan of the Year, and Addicted has fantastic lure-ins. Undermining the artist’s effort in each album track would be pure hatred. Bella Shmurda’s debut album, Hypertension, is a showcase of his compositional prowess and a testament to his reputed longevity in the music industry.

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