These Are The Local Albums You Should Be Listening To In 2019

The bombardment of masterly and seminal South African music continues. We are only in the third month of the year, but already we’ve had the privilege of receiving and hearing a massive stockpile of new releases and compositions from what the finest of our local musical artists has to bring. Not even to mention the local music that is to come.

Slay Or Die

We thought it a nifty idea to list various newly released local albums to keep your ears and hearts occupied for the year of 2019 thus far.

Debut Studio Album – Shotgun Tori & The Hounds

The album from the alternative indie folk supergroup has been four years in the making, but finally dropped on the 28th of February. It has been explained as “honest-to-goodness, raw, foot-tapping road trip music for warm-bodied, hot blooded humans.” Coming from some of the most notorious captains of the South African folk scene such as singer/songwriter Shotgun Tori and Fred Van der Merwe from Crystal Park fame. The band’s self-titled debut album plays host to a sweet mix of soulfully country-folk tunes with a playfully vulnerable and strongly defiant range. Guest appearance include Kobus De Kock Jnr, Brad Wooldridge, and Laurie Levine. It is available on all major digital platforms.

I Write What I Dream – Ntsika

The multi award-winning composer and vocalist, Ntsika Fana Ngxanga, has always dreamed the songs he wrote. Most of these songs would later be handed over to other artists to record, such as The Soil, Baobab Sisters, Khonaye, Vusi Nova, Soulphiatown, and Musa Sukwene. Recently he focused his attention and energy on recording these dreamt songs himself on his own first studio album. Most of which were inspired by his grandfather and dealing with the celebration of love, spirituality and one’s calling. You can stream and download the brand new album on major digital platforms, and attend the theatrical musical version of the release on the 6th of April at Joburg Theatre. This single show also coincides with his 30th birthday.

Voel Jy Die Genade – Jo Black

The highly-anticipated sophomore album from the Afrikaans pop-rock superstar was finally released in early February, and is expected to break ground as much as the gigantic preceding debut album, Skepe, which garnered in seven Ghoema awards. He has admitted to the challenges of the second album due to the time constraints and expectations linked to the follow-up. The songs are all uplifting anthems of hope and faith, continuing the theme of his sustained inspirational message and showcasing his strong vocals. You can find the album in all major music stores and all digital download and streaming services.

Same Same But Different – ChianoSky

The extraordinarily talented vocalist and pop sensation dropped a long-awaited studio album in January. The ten track release continues the trend of late that sees her collaborating with some of the most notorious hip-hop stalwarts on hot charting urban singles. There are several principal tracks on the album featuring Kwesta, KLY, and K.O. It has been produced by Saint Danger and Makwa Beats, known for producing Kwesta’s critically acclaimed music. They have achieved the task of compounding her distinct pop aesthetic with afro-inspired sounds. In her words, the songs explore her experiences and emotions through vulnerability while conveying her search, growth, and owning just that. You can listen or download the album on all quality digital platforms.

Athaza – Chris Prophet

On the 8th of March, Pretoria metal muso, Chris Prophet dropped his debut studio album on digital platforms. Athaza consists of a series of technically driven instrumental metal compositions that has been praised across the board. The album found its theme and dedication from the unexpected passing of a close friend of the artist. Each track handles a respective emotion dealt with during its timely inception. They represent personal and professional struggles in the self-taught guitarist’s daily life. Make sure to check him out on all social media pages.

Re Mmino – Prince Kaybee

One of the most prominent figures currently in the local dance music scene has also released his new album on the 8th of March. Prince Kaybee reached gold status with his debut album, Better Days, in 2015 and has since collected many awards for albums and singles alike. Now, the new album is specifically designed to keep the plethora of fans happy and positive. He aims to motivate his supporters to live their lives fully. He is also the favourite to win Record of the Year at the upcoming South African Music Awards for Banomoya, the most played local single on radio last year.

Can You Hear Us at the Back – The Shabs

The South African folk punk group has finally released their sophomore album of raw energy melodic folk and “DIY ethos” punk rock. They have enchanted scores of fans with their aesthetic and sound across the country since their appearance. The album dropped on the first day of March, and is the follow-up to the 2016 debut Folk Is Dead. For that album the band toured Europe for six weeks, and visited the UK, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, and Belgium. They are about to do the same for the launch of the second studio album, which will see them playing several countries in Europe over the period of a month. Find the album on all prime digital download or streaming services.

Koma – Spoegwolf

The new and fourth studio album from the famed Afrikaans alternative rock group was released in mid February. It has been explained as a concept album dealing with trauma. It follows a character experiencing different forms of intense struggle with an ultimate realization of the presence of love and light in his life. It is supplemented by artworks and strong themes to form the album as a whole and singluar concept. It seems fans are unable to quench their thirst for the Stellenbosch-based band of four, with a total of 150 sold out shows in 2018. Listen to the album on the big digital platforms and follow them on social media.

By David C. Steyn