DarkoVibes’ “Shutdown” is a steady burner

Proof that there's life in dancehall beyond basic raunchiness

“Shutdown” viewed alongside the finely tuned richness of DarkoVibes’ excellent releases this year, is a steady burner. But while the focus is still very much on the mundane, he goes beyond the club driven story arc of the dancehall genre to send some warnings to haters; “Me Goons Go Turn Your House Into A Mine”.


Produced by N O V A, “Shutdown” is lush with a trance-inducing atmosphere achieved through the quirky reggaeton inspired organ percussion of the beat. It’s followed by the intensity of Darko’s “Aye, Look!”—a boom that sounds like a radio finding the right frequency—as he rides the riddim of the deep bass with echoed chords and the dub flourish of straight reggae. The beat’s mellow yet peppy harmonies are catchy enough to run a dance singlehandedly and DarkoVibes’ doesn’t try to impose but rather seems to play guide on the reggae cruise.

He sings his squad’s praises for the most part—“We Are Go Shutdown London, Malam To Accra”—but keeping the vibe going appears to be the main focus. The repetitive looped samples never get boring thanks to his vocal manipulation of pitches, speeding up his flow or slowing it down to suit the beat.

The dancehall harmonies paired with Darko’s patio vocals makes “Shutdown” the most straightforwardly satisfying of his recent productions. Listen to “Shutdown” below.

Featured Image Credits: Instagram/darkovibes

You are meeting Debola at a strange time in his life. He wandered into a dream and lost his way back. Tweet at him @debola_abimbolu

ICYMI: Watch DarkoVibes’ raunchy video for “Tomorrow”