Album Review: Rooted EP - Meaku
On September 18th, 2015, international recording artist Meaku released his sexy R&B track “All I See Is You” on ML1 Records. By the time the singer-songwriter-producer released his debut album, Rooted EP, in mid-December 2016, the lead single had been streamed over 2.3 million times on Spotify. The success of “All I See Is You” seemed to have an effect on the rest of Meaku’s catalog: Seven songs on the artist’s SoundCloud page have been streamed collectively another 1.7 million times. The Inglewood, California native was placed on Spotify’s curated playlists “Bedroom Jams” and “Sexy RnB”. “All I See Is You” also attained Top 40 status, reaching #37 on the Amazon R&B charts. “I really have to give the credit to Spotify,” said Joseph Karre, CEO of ML1 Records. “Spotify picked up on him [Meaku] early and was invaluable in helping new fans discover his music.”
On the production level, Rooted blends afrobeat with pop, R&B and trap sounds - setting new standards for music genre innovation. Upon release, the EP attracted attention from African media, including MTV Base East. The entire album was recorded, mixed and mastered by Meaku before leaving the United States for a 4-month stay in Africa. His promo tour featured high-profile interviews on radio/television along with many packed performances. The international recording artist has built a solid fanbase not just throughout Africa [Uganda, Nigeria, etc.] but also in Japan and throughout Europe.
Hypnotic, dynamic, and seamless from start to finish, this highly anticipated release features eight singles along with a bonus track that range from smooth and sultry to up-tempo and rhythmic. His unique blends of music flow together flawlessly while accompanied with his harmonic singing style and slick vocals. The Nigerian-American melodic mastermind is leading and creating his own musical movement. Meaku delivers a body of work that is naturally rooted, thus guaranteed to be timeless.
The album’s bonus track, “Study Your Body (Remix),” completes the musical journey with a dance banger. Ghanaian producer Mo Beatz flexes his production skills on this track. Meaku enlists the sultry vocals of Nigerian songstress Niniola, serving as a solid contrast to his own voice. “Let me study your body / You get my attention / My favorite subject not to mention / I don’t need a book I can listen, and read your body language what’s written,” Meaku sings. This fast tempo, sexy club banger demonstrates a different, but yet comfortable side to Meaku as he channels both afrobeat & Rnbass with impressive vocals and clever lyrics.
The Rooted EP is varied and unique, showcasing Meaku’s talent as a singer, songwriter and producer. Whether you just want to turn up [Straight Up] or just need to calm down [#TDBTCD], this EP delivers a song for almost every mood and feeling. Each track has it’s own distinct sound, yet blends together to create a classic album. We can’t forget to mention “Original Somebody,” an impressive afrobeat dance hit that’s indicative of his mindset as a whole on this project. “I’m somebody, the original somebody / Here’s my story / They treat me like I’m nobody / But I stay humble / Cause they really don’t know” he delivers. He isn’t crowned king yet, but Meaku is well on his way to becoming the Michael Jackson of Africa.