So the Kontrol Tribe squad came together and released their album dubbed Under Kontrol executively produced by Calvin and recorded at Volte Face Records. We couldn’t wait to grab a copy especially after Calvin kept on dropping bits and pieces on his Instagram page which induced #FOMO. The album features the whole squad, that is Mawiza, GTi, Frost, LaToya, Reedz, Jungle Bwoi, Nolue, Crystalline, Reggie, and of course Cal_vin. After just a few tracks we got the message, Bulawayo is boldly on the Hip Hop map and so is Ndebele rap.
Some of the tracks dropped earlier in the year like Amangcono, Soz’wisa, and Mana Wo so we knew exactly what to expect. Ghetto kicks off the album with a relatable storyline especially if you grew up in the medium to high density suburbs. Labangani Bami is the ultimate squad track which has the most features in the album. LaToya (Oh LaToya) the Loxion Diva gives life to track 3 (Complete) which is a love song. Actually she brings life to the whole album as she interludes with her charming voice at the end of almost every track. In case you’re wondering who she is, she’s that lady who goes ‘It’s ZimboMusic babe’ on all Zimbo Music productions. Another thing, Cal_vin wraps off the track on that Matonto tip with his version of Ncam Ncam.
The Tribe samples the Guardian Angel Riddim with Jungle Bwoi and he pulled it off, it’s a nice track. Frost follows with controversial bars on money. He balances dangers of the love and misuse of money at the same time exploring that it’s a need in life, giving references to life situations in each case. The hustle continues with Gerrit featuring Calvin, Mawiza, GTi, and Nolue. You have to understand the fire that comes with GTi and Mawiza on one track, it’s a lyrical dynamite really and with Cal_vin behind the production it’s a banger. Sobushosha is the ultimate December turn up song, perfect for that kombi ride too if I must add. It has a feel of Arthur Mafokate’s Oyi Oyi and falls in the kwaito genre. The same kwaito feel extends to the next track Fronto although the fusion with Hip Hop is eminent. Jungle Bwoi comes back with Shoot To Kill and by this time we are convinced he’s the next big thing in reggae, he’s execution is worth all the applause. Senko here is some competition.
This is album was well compiled and the fact that its Ndebele rap makes us even more proud. People like GTi and Jungle Bwoi are underrated and with good exposure they can deliver even at an international level. We’ve heard squad compilations from Lit Gang, Burg Boiz, and recently Kontrol Tribe, now we wait for Zimbo Music to bless us with theirs. To round up, here are some of the Ndebele punchlines we loved from this album:
Njenge Econet boss mina I had to Strive for this money
Ngzoku feeder uthando, vul’umlomo angathi uyazamula
Ng’zama uk’wenz’ ama K njengo Heavy
You so sweet i should keep you kule sugar basin