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(SONG REVIEW) POTATOES BY CLAY FT MAK 4

Cover art for Clay's Potatoes

Review Summary: The fact that she doesn’t try to make this downbeat and super-personal makes Potatoes one of the more emotionally honest singles this year.

As you all know, the amount of Clay fans within and outside the African Rock Community is rapidly increasing, and mostly among the newer members. I for one, am a fan of her voice, it’s simply eargasmic and I’m definitely going to go see her when she performs at the upcoming Rocktoberfest next month. I can say now, that her first single Dancing In The Sun is better in my opinion, but that may be slightly biased, due to the fact that I have listened to her first single more than Potatoes. I know I’m going to get lots of posts from people saying they don’t like my review, but please try to keep an open mind when reading the review. Clay is far more punk now than she ever was back when people were playing Dancing In The Sun, a song which in spite of its knowingly aggressive tone was as inoffensive as Anwuli was. Don’t expect to see ‘potatoes’ flying all over the place should a video suffice for this song; this is far more punk than Lemanya pretended to be.

Go listen to the song if you haven’t already HERE

Potatoes is a mid-tempo, enjoyable track that brings a smile to your face even after repeated listens. Potatoes has some similarities to her earlier singles. Clay’s voice comes off as having a bit of twang to it, but that does not take away its credibility in the slightest. All throughout this song, Clay proves herself and her song craft to be anything but ordinary, this song is very demonstrative in just how talented she is. This track, like many, is typical and expected of adult lyricism, though the aforementioned maturity gives it the boost to make it worth multiple listens.  I find myself, years and years after initially hearing Clay, continuing to succumb to the impeccable vocal performance from her. This song also has a picture perfect blend of electric and acoustic guitars that’s impossible not to enjoy. It shows the pinnacle of Clay’s vocals and lyricism. While very commonplace for a punk artist, Clay sings with tenacity and maturation, the likes of which were and are hard to come by in this part of the world. Though a bit simplistic lyrically, the track succeeds in that facet, and furthermore, gains a relatable and listenable magnetism to its merit. The rapper Mak 4 rapped in the Igbo dialect and can almost be mistaken for Phyno. It was good input from Mak 4 and an impressive collaboration between Clay’s and Mak 4. I think asides from Clay’s impressive vocals, the rap also made me like this song more.

Clay performing at the recent +234 Rock Party back in July

Clay performing at the recent +234 Rock Party back in July

One noticeable flaw with this song is the mid-tempo. It started like it’s going to go a tempo higher, but to my surprise the tempo sloped a bit and for me, that flawed the entirety of the song. Despite this, Clay continued to complement it with every harmony that comes along. It’s no accident that Clay is one of the leading vocalists in the Nigerian Rock Music scene. To be honest, it’s a more natural fit for Clay, her elegant high notes lift the song to unimaginable heights, even though the instruments sometimes tries to drown her vocals. Then something new in the Nigerian Rock music scene was featured on this song, the use of local dialects. Many people are fond of her singing, and I happen to be one of those people. On this song, she attempts to reach high notes in the chorus, but it brings down the quality of the song. Another flaw with this song is the production. Like I said earlier on, the tempo of the song sloped after it started on a high. The instruments clouded a bit of the vocals. They were just too loud. For instance, Mak 4’s rap was drowned by the instruments and even while it sounded like Phyno, it would’ve been awesome if it was clearer and more audible. If you’re all about heart-rending vocals and you can overlook the sub par riffs and rhythms and guitar solo on this song, this is a genuinely excellent single, one which isn’t a chore to sit through, and one whose ambition is hidden underneath the initial surprise but definitely present. And again, like we all heard on Clay’s cover of ‘Godwin’ the phrase “Coldflames beats” also came up at the end of this song. Now I’m not going to go into the details of how rocks songs are not produced with ‘beats’ but recorded instruments, but I’ll say, even if this song was produced with beats, I think the listeners can already hear that on the song, I mean its pretty audible even more audible than Mak 4’s rap. This is a rock song, not an hip-hop song where the producer of the songs gets credit for the beats by being mentioned on the song.

In conclusion, even though this song is not the most original thing you’ve ever heard, it is still worthy to stay in your media player. In addition, I don’t think you’ll get bored of it after a while. It would take constant listening to do so.

Final rating:

  3/5

Seyi Obe

Seyi Obe is a Project Engineer working with an Engineering firm in Lagos, Nigeria. He received a B. Eng in Mechanical Engineering from Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria. He loves rock music, and as a critic, he listens to all the sub-genres. His favourite sub-genre is Metalcore. He is head-honcho-in-charge of reviews on AudioInferno.com. When he is not managing any engineering project at the engineering firm where he works, he is here writing reviews for different categories of things, ranging from singles, EPs, albums, concerts and shows. He also writes articles on Rock Music and its development in Africa. He loves taking photographs, and is mostly responsible for supplying the quality high definition pictures that you see around the website.

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  1. as usual flawed review….song is not high pitched , beat isnt louder (for a rock song) and for Gods sake clay is not punk. Google the meaning of punk.
    you guys need a better review person….. well @coldflamesbeats , he will forever get the stick for his tags, but he is an awesome producer….mak4 sounds a lot like phyno , good thing for the track bad thing for mak4.

    Awesome tracl overall. i would have given it 4.5

  2. funny enough , the review made me download the song, and unbelieveably it is a fantatsic song. what is seyi talking about. Nicely executed african rhythyms blended with rock which turned out way more than my expectations. I think seyi should be the more open minded person. and by the way they are no solos or riffs in the songs .
    either you have a perosonal vendetta or your not just musically intelligent.
    i am a new converted clay fan. keep it up girl , you will go places

  3. Engineer seyi.this is a closed minded review .song is awesome and honest. Best Nigerian rock song I have heard.
    Maybe you should stick to engineering.lol
    @axl from her songs she’s a soft rock /pop rock /alternative. She’s nothing close to punk. She sounds more emo.
    Anyways people say audioinferno is anticlay. I guess its true.

    • Funny thing is, if you actually read the review, you’d notice that Seyi praises Clay constantly. His main issue with the song has nothing to do with Clay but rather with the production of the song. The person responsible for that is Coldflames as he made us aware with the addition of “Coldflames Beats” at the end. The song itself is great but the production leaves a lot to be desired. This is not surprising, Nigerians are not used to producing or mixing rock music. That skill will come with time.

    • Soft rock, Pop Rock, Alternative and Emo. Mentioned 4 genres of rock music there, it’s either you aren’t sure of her genre or she isn’t sure of her own genre. Her genre is a matter of perspective. Chances are, If she comes on her to say what genre she is you will be like “oh wait but this song didn’t sound that way, that song didn’t either. I honestly DON’T remember as song of hers that sounds EMO. You think EMO because of how she dressed in some pictures. Here’s the good part, you wont admit. If you do, AHAHAHAHA. I seem to recall her dressing punk like in a couple of pictures too… That begs the question, where is the confusion coming from?

      If you ask me, the fact that her genre is debatable is an advantage to her, it means one thing:

      SHE IS VERSATILE.

      If i was her, i’d be happy about the confusion on what she actually is.

  4. I see the beats of runaway by the corrs, the vocals of of ” i am with you ” by Avril Lavigne, the swag of cranberry and the perfection of enya and hip hop all encapsulated in one song. To make it unique, she made the song her own with pidgin and igbo raps.
    This Girl and her production team should be performng opening acts in the Grammies .
    Her Genre here is immaterial . This is good music and for it to be coming from Nigeria shows that we have grown musically .
    I know sometimes we criticize to make her better but you know , some of the best songs in the world never nearly made the album
    This is a dope song. All she needs is promotion , promotion and more promotion
    I am proud to be a Nigerian . I never thought we would come close to this so soon
    You rock Girl and keep doing what you are doing . I have gone to check her discography because of this song . Kudos to her producer . The sky is his Limit
    Its a job well done. A star has been born. Mark my word

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