The first that hits you when you hear the debut single from emerging singer Ocho, is how frantic the instrumental is. The song’s percussions, slightly tinged with autotune, are a non-stop staccato, reminiscent of marching band drum lines. This frenetic drum line vibe is something that pops up in the artist’s compact catalogue released over the course of a year, Ocho steadily refining what has distilled to become his very own brand of afro inspired electro pop. Add some synth work, and a steady bass line and you have all the ingredients for his new single “A Little More”.
Mad props to producer Hvrry for his excellent mixing work, because “A Little More” which features Bawa, sounds like the work of far more seasoned professionals. Hvrry even goes the extra mile with carefully placed vocal samples, and rare synth melodies. The premise behind the song is pretty straight forward however, revolving around the worn trope of a lover intoxicated by his love interest’s wiles and desperate to have just a little more of her time and affections all to himself. The song writing on “A Little More” could have benefited from some nuance, and a few pidgin based double entendres, but other than that, Ocho and Bawa deliver par the course for the standard contemporary afro pop song and surprise us with a very catchy chorus.
Ocho has the potential to become something really special (think Burna Boy) but while he’s got the production and sound end of his music down pat, he still needs to find a point of view that isn’t formulaic or repetitive. We have enough love songs, what we don’t have are smart ones. Ocho has a smart love song in him, he just needs to tease it out.
Listen to “A Little More” here.