Never in the history of naija rap has an album ever been as anticipated as MI’s sophomore album “MI2 the Movie”, MI’s ascendancy in the naija rap game is a relatively known one, from his critically acclaimed debut album “Talk about It” to his groundbreaking “Illegal Music” mixtape, Mi simply took the naija rap scene by storm and ever since he has not looked back. With guest appearances spanning various genres, it is easy to understand why Mr Incredible’s stock has risen so quickly and why he is one of the most sought after rappers in Nigeria.
There is a limit to which one can live on past glory, so it was just a matter of time before MI tried to make a second impression and after overseeing the rise of his chocolate city imprint, MI finally delivers “MI2 the Movie”. With a cast that includes Flavour, Julius Ceasar, Tuface, Waje, Timaya, and his Choc Boyz crew, MI‘s feature presentation looks set to be a blockbuster.
The comical intro “prelude” fits perfectly to the movie theme as MI does his best impersonation of saving a damsel in distress, this is quickly followed by the Brymo assisted “Action Film”, where MI shows that he is still the same actor we all know and love with lines like “yo, back with my new flow/ for the club, for the streets, for the studios/in my new crib, new car, new clothes/same actor, different year, new boss”. A welcome addition to just about any rap album is Flavour, and “Number One” is a testament to that fact, the track is a departure from the one that precedes it but MI skillfully raps over the highlife beat.
The first indication that you won’t get what you came looking for, comes in the form of the ill advised Timaya collaboration “anybody”, but MI manages to come up with substantial subject matter on tracks like “Nobody” featuring Tuface and “wild wild west” where he details the Jos crises. “beef” works well as he addresses his beef with Iceberg Slim & Kelly Hansome with simple yet thought provoking lines like “See musicians tryna beef me for real son/maybe they doin it to promote their album/they know that using my name will help them sell some/so Iceberg it’s alright you are welcome/but I’m not in their league help me tell them/the super eagles don’t play against the falcons/see wor wor pikin dey form handsome/kelechukwu clap for yourself, well done”.
A few tracks do sound less exceptional than the rest; “One Naira” featuring Waje fits this label as emphasis on the opposite sex puts the track in subject matter limbo. Some listeners may not be moved by “My head, my belle”, but it won’t be those going through the everyday struggles of naija life. The lead single “Undisputed” doesn’t quite gel as some of MI’s punchlines sound really amateurish. Everything seems to be moving in slow motion until the choc boyz anthem “Represent” comes on, where MI employs Drake’s simile heavy style of rap with lines like “make niggaz work hard, plantation/train these dudes, grand station/always come hard, masturbation”, “I rock dior, I am a Christian/I only like girls, I am a lesbian/I am loving all the drama, I am a Thespian”.
By the time the credits start rolling in on “unstoppable”, we realize that MI2 the movie is not an action film but a badly plotted comedy with poor direction and the only person having a good laugh is MI. Now, to be clear, Mi still stands head and shoulders above most of his peers and can serve his faithful fans lyrics that fuel their everyday lives, but when he is not firing on all cylinders, the results are disappointing at best and catastrophic at worst. From all indications MI doesn’t justify his number one status.
PLAY – Action Film, Number One, Nobody, Wild Wild West, Represent
SKIP – Undisputed, Anybody, Imperfect me, Epic
RATING – 6/10