The second chapter in Amen Noir’s Snapshots of Science series opens with an introduction by Lez Henry taking the role of master of ceremonies and setting the tone for what is to come.
Amen Noir: Snapshots of Science
We are eased into our journey with ‘Welcome’a track with mellow vibes gently caressing us with an aural massage before we are hit with the energetic ‘Footprintz’, a track which through its hip-hop-alike vibes serves as a potent reminder or the close ties rap performers who spit lyrics have with the spoken word artists who manifest the strength of the word.
The smooth mellow groove and poetic romantic vibe of ‘Hello’ compliments ‘Nameless’, a track that with its acoustic guitar and vocals by Lacy recreates the vibe of a spoken word event. 13th hour with its inspirational intro and optimistic spiritual content also name checks the prominent community activists in the UK whilst ‘So bad’ drops a beat that swings with a little two step, leaving us only to imagine what the resulting fusion would have been like with a singer complimenting the tune.
Phenomenal woman – possibly the standout cut, is an ode to the African woman with the sublime vocals of Fola massaging the lyrical accolades of Amen Noir whilst, ‘The Rain’ with the emotional power of its short interlude voiced by Twilight Bey articulates a history unspoken, unrecognised, “I was meant to be more than just a G”.
This is backed up by the cut ‘Who’s killing who?’ which also delivers an urgent message with passion. Yet somehow as we come to the final few tracks Amen Noir does not let the standards drop. The brilliant ‘World view’ in which Prophet Kwaku lyrically rides a sublime mellow roots based, bump and grind groove also manages to deliver one of the albums most powerful political messages without compromise - everything an African does must have a purpose.
Followed with more cuts delivering the raw truth like in Unity which successfully attacks the cliché of unity without purpose Amen Noir has successfully reminded us how the spoken word forever has the potential to come home and reclaim its place as the medium for cultural empowerment.
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