Album Review: Simi – Simisola
Simi’s debut self-titled album, Simisola is one of the best albums that may have flown under your radar this year. The amazing voice that many have fallen in love with has 15 tracks on her project with only one feature from Adekunle Gold. Not only is she cultivating a loyal fanbase but she is also getting recognition by the industry, winning songwriter of the year at AFRIMMA. Let’s get started on our song by song review of her album.
1. “Remind Me” – The album starts off with sobering self-reflection from Simi as she’s forgotten a few important things she used to do. Simi sings about how she would show love to her family but not to a stranger or person in need. Simi wants to be reminded of when she would care and show love indiscriminately. This is an honest song with a very profound message, a personal favorite from the album.
2. “Joromi” – If you haven’t heard it yet, the hit song “Joromi” is all about Simi wanting Joromi to want Simi. Simi has given Joromi the green light and all the signals but he’s just not getting it. It looks like Simi is going to shoot her shot. So ladies if there’s a guy out there who you want to shoot your shot to, listen to this song for inspiration. The Yoruba ambassador for team “Ladies Shoot Your Shot” is now Simi.
3. “Aimasiko” – On “Aimasiko,” lyrics like, “Mankind’s problem is not understanding the time” and other profound lyrics from the Chief Commander himself, Ebenezer Obey are featured. Simi remakes the song, adding her own twist to it. The song has an instrumental bridge with talking drums and it reminds us of the original song that many of grew up with and enjoyed. Paying homage to the legendary musicians who influenced our music today is always a bonus. Hats off to Simi and the other musicians on the instruments.
4. “Complete Me” – A love song not much about story on how the love came but more about depending on the love in order to feel whole. “What’s a heart without a beat?” is the question Simi asks on this song you can easily sing to your lover.
5. “Gone For Good” – Simi starts the song, singing over the piano and later invites the drums and synthesized sounds. The percussion increases the tempo the song to make you move a bit. Simi is confused thinking, “the guy has come back?” He moved on and she moved on. Yea, he’s playing games according to Simi. If you can relate, you’ll love this song.
6. “Original Baby” – Saxophone, horns, guitar, and drums drive the song and Simi’s voice takes a front seat to make a very well made song that would sound amazing live. The song has the message to be yourself. Simi gets a bit personal on the song calling herself “ordinary girl” and “boring” for not really one to turn up. Simi’s also “the life of the party” as she refers to herself as “funny”. Simi describes herself and gives a good message to listeners all in one song.
7. “One Kain” – Simi is feeling “One Kain”, who is making her feel One Kain, could it be a guy from her friend zone? This song is unexpected from Simi. Not because of how she’s feeling because its club friendly and at the same time somewhat personal. He is supposed to be padi but it looks like at the party she’s having second thoughts and catching feelings. Simi has an amazing flow, it goes very well with the step pattern of the beat. Ladies if you having friend zone issues, Simi has a song for you.
8. “Take Me Back (feat. Adekunle Gold)” – the song with Adekunle Gold has come and it has come with an acoustic guitar. Simi seems to be crazy for sending Kunle away..”Shakara ti ‘tun” according to Simi. Adekunle Gold complains for Simi messing with his heart. Simi brings another perspective as she admits her faults and wants back her old relationship and looks like Adekunle Gold takes her back. But who wouldn’t take Simi back? Kamann..
9. “O Wa N’be” – Simi gives a song primarily in Yoruba singing about the party scene in Lagos. Mummy Yetunde has gone, Daddy Suliat has gone, King Sunny Ade is on, Olamide Baddo is on too, again Simi’s flow here is outstanding. The song has a great guitar solo and signature throughout the song, another song that would sound amazing live. Not one of the best songs on the album, but if you love traditional-like songs like myself this song is for you. The song goes as if everyone is out partying and Simi’s at home.
10. “Smile For Me” – Shakers, guitars and distinct talking drums start the song and exist throughout. Simi sings to cheer up her lover. I would say so far the songwriting and beats on the album is great up until this song. It lacks the substance previous songs had. Next.
11. “Angelina” – The song sounds almost like a reggae but the tempo from the percussion brings it away from that label. It also sounds like bobo is cheating with Angelina smh. Simi was patient too, she let him carry 1 girl…then 2 girls…but once Simi saw Angelina, she was done. I just don’t understand how you could cheat on Simi. I’m glad Simi is letting him go. Seems like Simi is back with telling her personal stories.
12. “HipHop Hurray” – Party song from Simi? Yes! Simi would be a great rapper, I can see it. She’s singing but it sounds great as if she’s rapping. Simi has a nice flow and I’m not joking. For a party/hip-hop song, Simi’s diction is above average and her delivery is better than some too. This song could have used a good feature but instead Simi did it herself. Respect.
13. “Love Don’t Care” – So Simi’s mum called Simi. Simi’s mum says to her that someone saw Simi with omo ibo. “Se Yoruba don finish?” her Mum says. Then Simi’s Papa called Simi then calls Simi saying Simi needs to be with someone like a banker instead of the guy who her brother saw her with. Simi’s response to both of her parents is “Love Don’t Care”. The song is rooted in the guitar and Simi gets personal with not just herself but her family too. Seems like for Simi, she can be with anyone as long as the love is there regardless of tribe, race, etc. Another great song from Simi with another belief that contributes to who she is.
14. “Jamb Question” – This song came out 2 years ago, and I’m usually not a fan of putting older songs on a new album, but…this is Simi’s debut album so I’ll let it slide and it goes well after hearing ‘Love Don’t Care’. The song is laced with potent talking drums, guitar, saxophone and acoustic drums as well. Attention to us guys who plan to shoot our shot with Simi. We can’t ask her too many questions, especially if they are rhetorical or of no substance. The song is a great song 2 years ago and it still is.
15. “Tiff” – The last song of the album starts with piano and then unexpectedly jumps with drums that seem to cause a ruckus. Tiff which is to be “thief” could have used better percussion in regards to acoustic drums, but the talking drums were good as they sound amazing with the guitar. The song would have been better with better songwriting. But it ends with Simi’s amazing voice acapella.
Simi gave mostly personal experiences and personal messages for the masses. This album was not repetitive, not boring and not simple. Strengths of the album are to the songwriting/lyrics, flow, voice and versatility. Simi can slow it down and speed it up. The main weakness of the album is the lack of range throughout the album. Simi’s voice is uniquely wonderful, however there were no specific moments where she displays her range or a vocal solo, as some of us were hoping to hear. This is a great album. One of the best albums I’ve heard this year, listen to it in its entirety below.