In his storied career as one of afropop’s most consistent hit-makers and elite innovators, Sarz has only been behind the boards for an entire album once, producing every song on eLDee’s 2011 album, ‘Undeniable’. Considering the great work he did on that album, one would expect Sarz’s album stat line to be higher, but the producer has explained that he would only work on a full project with an artist he deems intriguing enough to match the less popular quirks of his sound.
On ‘I Love Girls With Trobul’, his new joint EP with fast rising singer, WurlD, Sarz seems to have found a worthy partner. WurlD first broke into Nigerian playlists when his collaboration with Shizzi and Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire, “Show You Off” took off. Prior to that, the singer did notable work with Polish DJ/producer Gromee, turning out a handful of electro-house cuts that found success in the Eastern parts of Europe. With this background, he was able to standout and compliment Sarz’s universe of throbbing beats.
The pair first announced their collaboration with “Trobul” last year, a bubbly cut on which WurlD goes through the motions of being hopelessly in love with a trying partner, over thumping synths and eerie piano keys. This combination of confessional, somewhat tragic subject matter and dance music production lays out the blueprint for ‘I Love Girls With Trobul’, twisting traits from their respective solo work into something unique and fitting for both artists.
Featuring some of his most layered beats yet, Sarz pushes the boundaries of the afro-house fascination he famously displayed on Niniola’s “Maradona”. He retains the genre’s club-ready knock, heightening its colour by infusing elements from a myriad of other musical influences. Like on the EP’s fourth track, “SWEAT”, glittering ’80s pop piano keys solemnly opens the song, before a serrated bassline and swinging drums arrive to soundtrack WurlD’s plea for affection from an undecided love interest.
Elsewhere on “Sade”, light piano keys and punchy, mid-tempo drums are surrounded by a robust bass guitar riff and intermittent, afrobeat-inclined horns. On the song, WurlD plays the role of a distraught admirer searching for a woman he met a few weeks prior. “Sade” closes out the 3-track narrative on the project’s back end, starting off with “Nobody Wins Interlude”, a phone call between Sade and her friend where she shares details of a one night stand who is yet to call her since their encounter.
Pre-released single, “Ego” serves as the conduit between both songs, describing the hesitation between both parties of a situationship, which could hinder the potential of a full relationship. On ‘I Love Girls With Trobul’, WurlD relishes this type of tension in his writing, opting for a more lived-in approach than the blue-eyed outlook of his debut EP from earlier this year, ‘Love Is Contagious’.
While WurlD still presents himself as a hopeless romantic, his lyrics are darker and they come across as more risky. “50 shades, make I sign the waiver/January till December, this your love is on another level”, he sings over the local percussions of intro track “Prisona”, describing the intoxicating feel of falling for someone, while implicitly acknowledging the dangers of losing yourself in that scenario.
Paired with Sarz’s excellent production, and delivered in WurlD’s eternally tender voice, the songs on ‘I Love Girls With Trobul’ ultimately come across as ear-worms, culminating in a superb project that could only be achieved by high-functioning pair.
Stream ‘I Love Girls With Trobul’ here.
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