International Music Review – Ewele by Show Deme Camp (Nigeria)
Back in 2010 when I heard ‘Tell Me Nothing’, I could tell Show Dem Camp were here to make a mark like tyre tracks, and they were going to ride Hip-Hop on the fast lane without crashing. They had Tajie take that journey; he wasn’t a third wheel brought to inhale and exhale, he made it all the more memorable. Since their breakout, Show Dem Camp has ensured their voice never went off dropping three projects (one album- The Dreamer Project, and two mixtapes- Clone Wars I and Clone Wars II) to critical acclaim. They’re arguably Africa’s doppest rap duos. And if you add other members/affiliates of the crew to the mix (Poe & Luccix), you’ve got a lyrical slaughterhouse.
Check O.D. and I Got That Yeah. So, when Tec blurted out “Flow out of this world/ Maybe I should rent a spaceship” he wasn’t just kicking intergalactic lines to get him on the Star Wars cast neither was Ghost blowing air “Some people say that I’m the G.O.A.T./Not ‘cos I’m a Capricorn/I’m a soldier boy who doesn’t need to turn his swagger on/It’s automatic, dawg” on Na So We See Am. They can hold their own bar for bar against your favorite emcee—they back every rhyme with flawless delivery.
They’ve been on the grind for a while— back as Loose Cannonz to members of BlackBoyDown movement to being featured artistes on BBC Radio 1xtra, you can’t knock their hustle. It took time before the mainstream caught up then the clouds aligned on their hit single Feel Alright. They switched up their style, going from Hardcore Hip-Hop, to Alternative Hip-Hop, to trying their hands on the humorous Happy Weekend take.
“SDC Bang Bang!” isn’t a platitude they utter to hoodwink and keep listeners munching on their soul- food, they do bang (your speakers, while they kick knowledge). Ewele, though not a fresh instalment to their discography, recently got its visuals released to fans and would-be fans, alike. Ewele has the duo spitting fire which is a well-crafted wordplay, since the title when translated from Yoruba to English means ‘dragon’. “We are not of this world!” That’s the anthem. Get with the programme, and do the martian salute.
Ms. Iye, the beautiful soulful singer, gets her thing going on this track, stoking the fire till the SA House rendition catches on. She rightly plays the part of a priestess conjuring the lyrical dragons to show for a dance. In her circle, the candles rise as part of the ritual while the raised calabashes fill the presence with incense. Our priestess, not alone, ably assisted by the fair one, the fire eater, and the masquerade; female worshippers clad in native attires get their routine on for the appearance of Tec and Ghost. When the dragons eventually face-off, they get down at the board table.
Review by Udochukwu Ikwuagwu