Jinja Bred EP: an Exotic yet still true to roots story of Play01 – (Review)
Jinja Bred EP was released this year, October 4th at Machame. The listening party that was- with ups and lows but that is beside the point. The EP is (insert fire emoji) great and a humble journey with Play01.
As regards the production, Play01 really took time on each track before he would guarantee it is done. He produced all tracks and Baru mixed and mastered the EP. One beat contribution from Rey Mac came in handy on 71M3 0U7.
Jinja Bred is a story of a Jinja bred man called Play01. The concept doesn’t seem so obvious but when you keep listening to what he is saying on most of the tracks you notice the Jinja in him. This is Play01 with wordplay and timed play – he has fun with the project.
I got ‘now’ and you got ‘next’.
The project is a 12 track piece of art that runs for 36 minutes. The backdrop story is given to us through the 3 interludes in Lusoga from likely a younger brother, who is giving a sort of narration out of the box. These timely interruptions from him fill in the gaps the music creates or leaves out.
The first Interlude invites to think of Play01 away from Jinja and trying to make it cut in the capital. The same voice on the interlude keeps us with tabs with the life in the village until the point he reaches Kampala, Clock Tower and winds up at Kabalaga Police Station. His brother has to come get him. That is the one story presented in the interludes. Family as a theme kicks in here.
The first half of the EP is about grinding, creating blocks that will stand. Tracks like Say Whatsup, Poa (aka this, the song I sing when I make a hundred million) carry the same tranquility and sentiment. In other words nothing but love that Ova (which samples Pryce Teeba’s Side Zeno) evokes as well.
How can we build if we stay bricks?
Play01 structure Jinja Bred in a way that every after two tracks about the grind, comes a celebratory track. Where Everything and Bulikiro are placed is one brainy thing to do. He places Dub-step/house in one song that’s so Play01. Together with him we see moments that we live and the ones we shouldn’t forget.
The EP spans on a high tempo until it hits The Soil which is a more Afro centric but urban feature with Jackie Akello. Listening to this track reminds you of how the EP actually opened. A co-existence of African vibes, and any other sound, similar to message that is at the heart of the EP: We have to love each other no matter where we are from. This EP says: So what if am from Jinja?
Wa aar in’gom wa dok in’gom [We come from dust and we go back to dust] – Jackie Akello sings in Acholi
Play01 offered work-man-shift songs for the grind and calling us to keep on grinding. How can we carry on with all that if we are split along certain lines? The essence of being African, Ugandan and from Jinja; can apply to anyone. We all come from somewhere and that makes us who we are and to exist we need to appreciate that. The project gets so conscious in its, sort of exotic production an approach offering deep poetry that can’t be taken lightly. Play01 is the type of rapper who spews knowledge on tracks like Bulikiro – makes him an Emcee who knows the times. He stays lyrical at all moments.
Life is such a drug … am spitting crack you know am dope.
As the EP scores to the last tracks, Say Good Bye takes away that entire hyper staff. It is a therapeutic track you listen to after a long day of grind or just anything tiresome. It is not one to relax you, it is one to help you think. For lack of a better word, reflection what at this point the project invites us to do. We think about the previous fun, grind, and good time and then we get to the realities we shouldn’t forget.
With the help of Afrie on the hook Say Good Bye comes off that one story about death and a tribute to Play01’s sister – this happens every day and we have to live with the memory of our loved ones.
The mood of introspection hits and yes we would talk about this, talk about chips and staff only if we agree because: Some may respect you when you say you are from Rubaga/While others gonna hate if you say you are from Ntinda/…We all trynna eat. If you don’t agree; Play01 as a bonus signs off with 71M3 0U7 more like it is his time to thrive because he got now and you got next.
Give me two minutes for the outcome/Give me two days to become one/Nigga, that makes sure tomorrow is outdone/ I ain’t even want to worry about the outcome…
Reaching the final moments of Jinja Bred, you will notice you could listen to the tracks backwards (end – beginning) and the story is still the same: we all have a different way life pans out. We all have a point of origin and it determines where we are going. Did you know LP (Lyrikal Proof) was meant to form a group with Play01? Life pans out differently due to many reasons. Play01 went abroad and terms changed.
Jinja Bred is that recollection of the past to placing us to the present time; with life lessons better expressed by Not Today. To join the musical stories and interludes: stay true to who you are, family, true peeps and hurdles are there to be jumped over – simple moral of Jinja Bred.
Was trynna be better than, myself/reached the heights I ain’ never been/to the point when I die/ I will be buried in; the city centre/or next to Museveni !
For now we wait for Aura the album.