Sunday, December 19th, 2021

B Wise ft. Sampa the Great & Milan Ring – Ezinna

Wise and great? Rings true…


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Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: It’s hard to write about joy. Joy — when it really hits — is something that expands beyond the remit of human language, filling up the inexpressible with the fullness of its feeling. It’s pure overwhelm, even moreso than other overwhelming feelings; the overwhelms of sorrow and rage at least have with them a long history of attempts to capture them in writing. When you write about joy, though, it so often comes off instead as mere contentment. “Ezinna” manages to capture joy in all of its fullness — it suffuses every surface of the track, from Milan Ring’s guitar lines, which evoke a certain nostalgic energy without descending into pure retro formalism, to the verses that B Wise and Sampa the Great deliver. Their chemistry over this beat has the easy charm of old friends catching up, of stories traded late into the night. It’s joy! Drink it in!
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Iain Mew: A light cocktail of refreshing sunshine, with each vocalist providing their own complementary flavour.
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Claire Biddles: So playful and breezy! Feature-heavy pop-rap tracks can often feel overstuffed or disconnected, so it’s pleasing to hear such effortless, characterful interplay between the three vocalists on “Ezinna”. The swirling guitar line — played by Milan Ring, I think — is also lovely, like a sunbeam the others are chasing.
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Ian Mathers: Somehow has both sunny, breezy good vibes and a reflective tinge at the same time (these things don’t always go well together but do here). Both B Wise and Sampa are (as promised) great, but I’d probably like this about half as much without Milan Ring’s guitar being so prominent.
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Michael Hong: There’s a warmth to the way B Wise sings “I’m coming home,” but the heat of “Ezinna” comes from Milan Ring’s funky guitar line, the kind of playing that borders summer days and nights, melting you into a sweaty embrace.
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Nortey Dowuona: Ezinna is an Igbo word that means good father. And on this song, both B Wise and Sampa demonstrate the behavior of well-fathered kids: constantly making sure to praise their culture, spread their winnings with their friends and promising to return to their family homes. Milan Ring joins in with a warm croon of that promise, shining across the low, humming bass and wriggling guitar. And at the last moments, B Wise’s father gently praises his son, intoning his full Igbo name with pride.
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