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Sauti Sol’s Midnight Train is a Sonic & Visual Masterpiece

These melanated kings never disappoint!

Words aren’t enough to describe the YouTube live concert Sauti Sol gave us launching their new album ‘Midnight Train’ but we have to try right?

Alright then, let’s go!

It goes without saying that Afrika has highly talented people and every part of this show displayed that in all its beauty. Everybody in this Kenyan production brought their A-game! From the set designers to the motion graphic artists right down to the backing vocalists.

The introduction gave a subtle nod to the album title with the band and members of their record label, Sol Generation, boarding a train as they were about to set us out on an entertaining melodious journey.

The moment the music started you could tell this was going to be one heck of a ride! Harmonies were belted left, right and centre and honestly, there wasn’t even time to breathe. Not enough credit is given to sound engineers but I could feel the work put into the sound design. I learnt the vital lesson that there’s no such thing as too many ad-libs. Layer upon layer of strong, beautiful vocals was just what the doctor ordered this weekend! 😃

The virtual experience was well directed and the sets were superbly designed. Sol Generation is a musical powerhouse and having artists such as Bensoul and Nviiri the Storyteller onboard spiced up the whole show.  

The band gave us a really tight set that was well complemented by group members Fancy Fingers (lead guitarist) and Savara (drummer). However, a big shout-out goes to their bassist, Yvan Kwizera, hailing all the way from Burundi 🇧🇮! He was the instrumentalist that brought it all together to give us that well-knit sound we’ve come to know of the superstar group.

These guys are Africa’s top superstars right now, I’d dare say. I’ve seen my fair share of virtual music performances over this lockdown and this one was a stellar offering!

Every track from Midnight Train was on their set with the addition of all-time faves such as ‘Short & Sweet’ and the classic ‘Kuliko Jana’. All of the oldies were given entertaining variations that made them even more soulful than ever. It was breathtakingly beautiful.

These melanated kings never disappoint when it comes to their wardrobe. Their stylist knows what they’re doing and it’s always an aesthetic feast.

Special mention also goes to Bien-Aimé and Willis’ dance moves. Their choreography definitely kept us on our toes. I think the English language has a word for it — infectious!

The only problem with this show is that it ends. That was 97mins of pure bliss. To get your own experience of the musical journey of the Midnight Train might be a tough feat as most videos have been pulled down. You may, on the other hand, listen to the album and the board the train below. Enjoy!

Tinomutenda Mpunganyi

A digital storyteller who loves music, UX design, life, God and all things beautiful. I'm also a Rotaractor and YALI RLC SA alumnus.

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