Essentials: Hudda Chini’s ‘Self Righteous’ EP Is Too Hot To Be Slept On

The newest South African rapper to look out for

If New York is the center of power for American Hip-hop, Africa has a harder time deciding between Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa. MI and Ice Prince gave Nigeria a taste of the throne before attention shifted to Ghana thanks to Sarkodie. But South Africa’s closeness to global urban culture has ensured its retainer of the continental hip-hop mantle especially since everyone else seems too busy riding the Afropop wave.

Hudda Chini has debuted as the newest Hip-hop artist to look out for from South Africa with his Self Righteous EP. And like most good rappers, he documents his reality—as an upcoming rapper—with dramatic delivery and pseudo-conscious lyrics. There are a lot of things to like about Hudda Chini starting from his reminiscing style of rap. Self Righteous may border on preachy for some but Hudda Chini doesn’t try to force his personal beliefs down anyone’s throat calmly rapping, “I Don’t Wanna Come On Too Strong Or Too Rude Without Building Rapport”.

Title-track, “Self Righteous” does a good job of introducing the rapper as a young rapper who recognizes the world around him isn’t set up for him to advance but with effort he can make it. Lines like “Pops told me there’s no such thing as talent in the world. We’re all fucked” are gloomy but he knows hope lies in his hard work. The message of the somber number rapped over haunting piano chords is that he is proud of his small beginnings because he recognizes his potential and is ready to put in work till he’s one of the greats.

A similar theme of trying to make the most of bad situations serves as the anchor for the second track, “Real Crown”. Narrating the story of love holding abuse relationships together but rather than shy from the dark topic, he uses it to exaggerate the disloyalty of fake girls who can’t stay because their man is broke.

Self Righteous seemed destined for the dark emo days playlist till “Ima Dog”. The 3rd track on the EP still has a broke struggling artist narrative but the beat and Hudda Chini’s flows make it listen like Lil Uzi Vert’s “XO Tour Life”. The preppy rhythm is powered by Anita Baker and Sade Adu inspired keyboard patches fused with whistling harmonies that serve as a platform for song about faking it till you make it. “Great White” and “Petey Pablo” are also turnt song with trap beats. “Petey Pablo” manages to be showy with very little talk about money.

Hudda Chini thumbs through his life in intimate details on Self Righteous and it’s perhaps the most realistic rap album released so far this year.

Listen to Self Righteous below.

Featured Image Credits: Instagram/hudda_chini

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