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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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