A 1-Listen Review of SOLIS’ debut EP ‘Stairway To Heaven’

welcome to SOLIS' universe

For years, singer and songwriter, SOLIS has occupied an interesting space in the current musical landscape in West Africa. As one of bedroom pop’s head honchos and an enthralling voice in the underground alternative music scene, she continues to carve a lane for herself with her genre-defying music despite its hard entry into the mainstream Afropop market.


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Over the weekend, the young star finally released her long-awaited debut EP titled ‘Stairway to Heaven,’ the follow-up to ‘Ruled By Venus, Unfortunately,’ her first mixtape which was released exclusively on Audiomack. On her latest, the singer employs the help of a talented spate of singers, rappers and producers including 44DB producer, KD, newcomer rapper Champs, Jamaican singer, Amindi and DAP the Contract to weave poignant stories about love and loss.

In usual SOLIS fashion, the singer airs her romantic and personal frustrations all out on this breathtaking project. Sharing with her Instagram followers, on its release day, SOLIS says: I can’t believe it. It’s finally here. My debut EP. my tears are as real as the cover, the only difference is these tears are one of undiluted joy and pride. I’m so proud of me, so proud of SOLIS.” The post continues: “I hope this EP makes you feel something. I hope it makes you float and cry, dance and sing, scream. I pray you find yourself in it the way I found my way back to myself. I hope it brings you to your guides, brings out your light.”

With a beautiful voice that evokes the opulence of silk sheets, her latest ‘Stairway to Heaven,’ rings true on her mission to provide listeners with aural healing. The vibe is undeniably hypnotic, although it’s not obviously commercial. However, since its release, the singer has already celebrated some milestones including hitting over 3,000 plays on the Amindi-assisted “Abeg,” alone. To this end, we’re giving the EP a much-deserved spin and putting it through the NATIVE one-listen review test.

In Usual 1-Listen Review Fashion, All Reactions Are In Real-Time While The Music Plays. No Pauses, Rewinds, Fast-Forwards, Or Skip.

“The Lonely Star (Intro)”

The first track builds the vibe for the rest of the project. This piano solo is a solid intro for a project that claims to lead listeners to heaven’s gates. SOLIS’ high-pitched vocals kick in after a moment and I am amazed by how good she songs each time. Then the rain sounds come in taking your mind into a place of inner thought and peace. So angelic and beautifully performed. Just like the title, the song gives off a feeling of loneliness. A perfect start to the project, in my opinion. 


“Angel,” is an aptly titled track from a singer like SOLIS and one of the project’s pre-released singles. Within the context of the project, it definitely comes to life a bit more, painting a clearer picture that visualises SOLIS’ personal experiences. “Like maybe I’m angel,” she coos on the hook, a detail that seems more certain which each lyric she sings. I will definitely be revisiting this number.

“Love Games” ft. Champs

This is another one of the EP’s promotional tracks and possibly one of my favourites. Going with the theme of the album so far, “Love Games” is equally a mellow soulful track but here, SOLIS explores more of her vocal range as she delves into matters of the heart. This number features the talented artist Champs who makes the song more memorable with a stellar rap verse. There’s something beautiful but equally sad and solemn about SOLIS’ music. 

“Without You”

I get a nostalgic feeling with this beat but can’t seem to place my finger on it. SOLIS’ vocals on this number is quite impressive, her ranges just keep getting better and more engaging. You just can’t help but listen to her and whatever she may be saying with close attention so you don’t miss anything out. “Take me back to when I had no idea what love was,” is an apt lyric that exemplifies how many of us may be feeling at the moment. I would say that the track is quite short, I wish It was longer and her ending is abrupt but nonetheless, I’ll be giving this another spin later.

“Abeg” ft. Amindi

This is definitely one of my favourites as SOLIS’ voice and harmonies fill the whole song in her usual fashion. I mean who else can make a pidgin slang sound smooth and enthralling other than SOLIS. It’s exactly the type of song I’d expect from her. Amindi’s feature on this number is divinely ordained (God bless the A&R’s). Her melody-driven sound just takes you to a realm of pensive thinking. Such a beautiful track. 

“No Feelz”

If sensuality and affection was a song, this track embodies all that and more. “I feel it everywhere, I feel it in your touch,” simply explains the song’s entire premise as many would easily recall the feeling of longing for attention and love from someone whose heart can’t be trusted. 

“Gloria” ft. DAP The Contract

As we get to the end of the project, we get to experience the brilliance of Daps the Contract on this mid-tempo jazz-inspired track and might I say that he was perfect. His fast and clear rap reminds me of the traditional rappers from the noughties as Daps’ hard-hitting verse compliments the dreary tenor of SOLIS . The pair are just a magical blend so this is already one of my favourite tracks on this project. 

Final thoughts

For a debut project, ‘Stairway to Heaven,’ expands our worldview of SOLIS’ universe. Here, she takes on more risks, contorting and shaping her voice in unimaginable ways as she sings about our deepest romantic desires that we don’t say outright. She bounces effortlessly around the futuristic production helmed by SirBastine, Fresh Meat alum Konde Oko, Trill Xoe, Le Mav and more, with catchy verses that will have you running them back to catch all the intricacies.

However, despite all these, ‘Stairway to Heaven’ doesn’t make any further grand statements. The subject matter and themes are wholly familiar to anyone who has been following her career trajectory up till now. Relying on her tried and tested method is no issue, as SOLIS has clearly found new ways to expand her vocal range, however, there were still moments were this thematic formula seemed to fall short. Regardless, SOLIS excels most when she’s in her love bag and this was proven many times on her debut effort. SOLIS represents a wanted evolution in today’s sonic landscape and her persistent visibility in today’s accelerating system of hype and overexposure continuously undeniably proves her superstar abilities which will only earn her new levels of recognition as emo-Afrobeats takes over the world.

Stream ‘Stairway to Heaven’ below.

Featured image credits/Demola Mako

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