The 5 Best Afrobeat/Afropop Albums Of September 2023

September brought us a fantastic roster of Afrobeats albums, each of which offers an exciting and engaging musical trip. From Bryan The Mensah’s lyrical prowess to Patoranking’s captivating rhythms, this month’s pick exemplifies the genre’s dynamic and ever-evolving character. Join us as we look at the top 5 Afrobeats albums from September, featuring outstanding artists like Khaid, Kweku Smoke, and Ruger.

Bryan The Mensah – Detour

After making a decision not to release any music any year, BRYAN THE MENSAH is back with a 5 track EP after releasing 3 singles earlier this year.

BRYAN THE MENSAH is a name that has been making waves in the alternative music scene. With his unique style of rapping and singing, he has become a favorite among music lovers and as his fans expand, his discography equally grows, releasing several projects, singles, and features.

“Detour” is a captivating 5-track EP that explores the theme of love from various angles. Bryan bravely shares his personal experiences with love, highlighting heartbreak, growth, and transformation. The EP underscores the importance of recognizing one’s worth in relationships, as seen through tracks like “Finally,” “If I Love You,” and his previously released single, “Something.”

What sets this EP apart is Bryan’s journey towards finding a profound love through his faith in Christ. The final tracks, “Deliver” and “Not Enough,” showcase his spiritual journey and how it has impacted his view on love. The EP reflects BRYAN THE MENSAH’s evolution as an artist and his profound exploration of the complexities of love.

BRYAN THE MENSAH’s last project, “Road To hastafari,” hit over a million listens with the hit R&B single, “Until I See You,” charting on several streaming platforms and becoming the fan fave. With “Detour,” he continues to impress and solidify his place as an alternative/fusion artist to watch.

If you’re a lover of music and appreciate artists who are unafraid to explore the complexities of life, then “Detour” is an EP you don’t want to miss.

Ruger – Ru The World

Blessed with an unbeatable knack for staying on top of culture’s pulse, Ruger has always known how to make an introduction and get his audience on their feet. His debut project, 2021’s PANDEMIC EP, was a Gen Z-propelled response to the lonesome effects of COVID-19 lockdowns, while 2022’s incendiary EP The Second Wave paired the rising star’s hitmaking gravitas with a subtle wink to the social media lingo and quirks that have worked their way into wider Afropop culture—while referencing sexcapades and the perks of his burgeoning public profile.

On Ruger’s first full-length project, 2023’s RU the World, the singer subverts the braggadocio and chest-thumping angst that has largely defined his work for a textured and revealing reimmersion into his world. “I feel like people will understand me more,” the singer tells Apple Music. “Most of the time, I’ve not been able to talk about a lot of things because I didn’t want to speak about it yet. So, I feel like I was misunderstood at some point. People will know me more and just get the storyline behind everything I’ve done and what I’m doing right now. There are lots of things I couldn’t say that I just said in this album.”

Across 17 tracks, Ruger is engaging while candidly addressing his come-up, love life and place in the game over midtempo instrumentals that take influences from Afropop, drill, amapiano and house. Still, he is committed to making music to soundtrack different phases of people’s lives.

Khaid – Emotions

At a mere 17 years old, Nigerian rising star Khaid has dropped an EP that’s nothing short of sensational — “Emotions.”

Following his impressive debut in 2022 with “DIVERSITY,” Khaid continues to elevate his craft by masterfully blending his Lagos-born sound with global influences that are propelling African music onto the world stage.

“Emotions” isn’t just an EP; it’s a profound musical statement that encourages listeners to embrace the rich spectrum of vibes that define Khaid’s music. From playful sing-alongs to introspective love ballads, Khaid effortlessly navigates his way through a wide range of emotions.

One of Khaid’s defining features is his ability to fuse spirituality and passion, showcasing remarkable versatility in conveying emotions through music. His ultimate goal is to create songs that resonate deeply with people’s lives, whether through soul-stirring choral sounds or high-energy drum patterns. “Emotions” is a testament to Khaid’s growth as an artist and his unwavering determination to blaze new trails in the music industry.

Khaid’s “Emotions” EP not only spotlights his undeniable musical talent but also his unique ability to connect with listeners on a profoundly personal level. It serves as a resounding confirmation of his potential as a pivotal figure in the next generation of musicians. Keep an eye out for Khaid; his star is on a meteoric rise!

Kweku Smoke – Playman

In the month of September, Ghanaian rapper Kweku Smoke released two long length projects on the same day.  One of these albums, ‘Playman,’ features a dynamic group of thirteen songs that showcase Kweku Smoke’s remarkable rapping abilities. The album explores rap-inspired sounds and features collaborations with musicians like Fameye, Pure Akan, Kamafo, Reggie, Braa Benk, Kuami Eugene and Oseikrom Sikanii , giving listeners a glimpse of Kweku Smoke’s flexibility and lyrical talent. The album”Playman” is proof of Kweku Smoke’s passion to his craft and to provide his audience with memorable and absorbing musical experiences.

Patoranking – World Best

Nigerian superstar Patoranking, aptly known as the “World Best” by his legion of fans, released his highly anticipated fourth studio album titled ‘World Best’ on September 6, 2023. With over 500 million YouTube views and a quarter of a billion DSP streams for his previous album ‘Three’ in 2020, Patoranking continues to soar as one of the most influential voices in contemporary African music.

Patoranking’s signature style blends Afrobeat, dancehall, and reggae, resulting in a sound that is uniquely his own. In his latest offering, ‘World Best,’ he expertly fuses these genres, crafting an album that pulsates with love, life, and conscious lyricism.

The album boasts a star-studded lineup of collaborators, including American hip-hop legend Ludacris, dancehall maestro Beenie Man from Jamaica, and Kingston’s unruly boss Popcaan. Patoranking’s African roots shine through with fellow hitmakers like Kizz Daniel (Nigeria), Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania), Victony (Nigeria), Gyakie (Ghana), and Zion Foster (UK via Nigeria), among others.

‘World Best’ is a testament to the diverse and vibrant production talent in Africa, featuring beats from renowned producers such as Phantom, Kel P, Killertunes, C-Tea, Mix Master Garzy, and more. The album’s range of production creates a celebratory tone that perfectly complements Patoranking’s lyrical prowess.

Over the past year, Patoranking has been offering glimpses of ‘World Best’ with key singles. “Kolo Kolo” featuring Diamond Platnumz has already garnered nearly 30 million YouTube views and earned the title of Best East Meets West Collaboration at the East Africa Arts Entertainment Awards (EAEA) 2023. Other standout tracks include “Abobi,” “Higher,” and the party anthem “Tonight” featuring Popcaan.

The collaborations on ‘World Best’ are nothing short of swoon-worthy. Ludacris joins Patoranking to reminisce about their humble beginnings on “Miracle Baby,” while “Gyal Like You” featuring Kizz Daniel is an ode to the captivating power of love. “Women of the Year” featuring Zion Foster is a sultry dedication to the ones who hold their hearts.

In “Amazing Grace,” Patoranking and the Dancehall King Beenie Man declare their unwavering love. The standout track “Babylon” features the rising Nigerian export Victony, creating a mesmerizing sonic journey into the unknown.

‘World Best’ follows Patoranking’s previous successful albums, including ‘God Over Everything’ in 2015, ‘Wilmer’ in 2019, and ‘Three’ in 2020. With his genre-blurring style and heartfelt lyrics, Patoranking continues to solidify his place as a global music icon.

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