Krizbeatz Assembles a Continent on Upcoming “African Time” Album
We’ve all pretty much uttered something to the effect of Africa’s unity at one time or the other, the catch-all for such sentiments is the slightly pan-africanist axiom, “African is one.” It is a lofty saying that finds root in our commonalities as a people, the similarities that have marked the experiences of our ancestors and, now, us, and the indelible mark that history has dealt the continent.
As it is, times are changing. The proliferation of western interests on the continent and their capitalist gaze has forced newer conversations among African millennials about identification, ownership of culture, and the problematic categorization of Africa as a homogeneous entity.
Nigerian producer, Krizbeatz, is attempting a body of work that reconciles the tensions of African unity and the erasure of homogeneity. Since cracking into the mainstream with his production of 2016’s dance anthem “Pana,” the beatmaker has concentrated his effort on synchronizing dance music with traditional African elements. He is set to bring his work to full fruition with his album, set to be titled African Time. The tone of the album is welded to the task of understanding Africa’s modern identity, not as a single entity but as the sum of so many parts that have eclectic differences.
“Africa has been a victim for centuries,” he says. “Our homes were invaded, our pride stripped, and our sense of identity altered and continues to suffer.” Krizbeatz juxtaposes the stripping away of our collective strength with the discord that can exist between Africans on the continent and the generation of blacks living in faraway lands. The divide is being bridged, however, through the arts, culture, and, importantly, through our music. The time has come to showcase the vibrancy of our culture while taking ownership of its narratives.
Krizbeatz’ pro-African album seeks to do this, drawing influences from several places on the continent to paint a mosaic of the African experience in its totality; capturing the depth and breadth of culture from his home country onward. African Time features award-winning east African singer, Diamond Platnumz, as well as Vanessa Mdee, Nandi and Ray Vanny. Nigeria’s Reekado Banks, Teni, Tekno, Yemi Alade and Ghana’s Samini and Fuse ODG are also expected to make an appearance on what is looking like a get together of African music heavyweights at a time when unity is needed more than ever.
The album is scheduled to arrive on July 17, but to lead the release, Krizbeatz offers an eponymous lead single featuring Teni.