New Music Friday: New Projects From Rema, Zlatan, Stonebwoy & More

jams for the weekend

The wheels of Afropop never stop spinning. More than ever, artists are utilising their creativity for the satisfaction of music fans around the world. These projects serve the purpose of preserving a moment (or moments) and distilling them into sonic pleasures. On this week’s New Music Friday, there are exciting new releases from Nigerian superstar Rema, Ghana’s Reggae/Dancehall veteran Stonebwoy, Amapiano rhythms from South Africa’s Lady Du, and more projects from across Africa. Get into it below.


Since debuting the album last year, Rema’s stock has risen, with “Calm Down” and its remix becoming a global anthem and him touring the world and performing on some of the biggest platforms. With an India and North America tour on the horizon, this deluxe version is well-positioned to give Rema another great run and bring his music to a wider audience. Based on the sonics, what this deluxe does is erase every doubt as to Rema’s artistry; at the moment, he is operating at an incredibly high level and we should be excited as to how much he can achieve with his music.


With Zlatan finding new forms of expression as a creative, the ‘Omo Ologo’ EP is the opening chapter of a new start in his career. He fuses the songs with bright, encouraging lines to the streets while still finding a balance between introspective and celebratory. ‘Omo Ologo’ has guest appearances from Seyi Vibez, Young Jonn, ODUMODUBLVCK and Jeriq.


‘5th Dimension’ is Stonebwoy’s first album since his partnership with Def Jam Recordings and signals a new beginning for the Ghanaian superstar. The 17-track track features heavyweight collaborations with Davido, Tiwa Savage, Stormzy and Angélique Kidjo, among others. “This album will open people’s eyes to a lot of things. It will bring them to Africa. It will let them understand that everything has always started from Africa,” he told the NATIVE.


Nigerian rapper Goya Menor had a viral moment with “Ameno Amapiano,” culminating in a great 2021 and 2022 for him and Ghanaian record producer Nektunez. On his EP ‘BOMBOY,’ Goya Menor enlists Nas Tee, Jaywillz and Ladé for an often fast-paced ride where he implores listeners to trust God and chase their dreams diligently.


Love has always been a common theme in Jaywillz’s music. Backed by consistent releases—2020’s ‘P.U.N,’ 2021’s ‘Love or the Word’ and 2022’s ‘Sun Flower’—the Nigerian singer has perfected his act of laying his saccharine vocals over mid-tempo Afropop melodies. He continues to do so on his latest EP ‘Pretty Inside,’ which features production from Shugavybz and Hulla, among others. Jaywillz is sure to capture listeners with his ruminations on romance.


For her debut LP, South African rapper, singer and DJ Lady Du delves into the personal and spiritual. With Amapiano as a bedrock, the 20-track project shuffles between introspection and fun, with assistance from African acts including Cassper Nyovest, Reekado Banks, Yemi Alade and Blxckie, among others. Lady Du’s music is deeply rooted in Africanism, with her saying, “I’ve never felt any reason to be embarrassed about my own spirituality, and embracing my ancestors. My beliefs should never offend someone that, for instance, doesn’t believe in ancestors. We are all allowed to believe in different things.”


Nigerian singer Tino Moody unveils his debut EP ‘Moody is Pacific,’ a fine blend of Afrobeats, R&B, and Soul. With production credits from Solidkeyz and Papi Gunzo, Tino Moody showcases his artistry with smooth vocals on themes of affection and sex. “I made it while in a romantically emotional phase of my life where love showed me so many sides to it, so I put it all in a 5 song project, so whoever’s listening can feel a glimpse of how I felt,” he says about the EP.

Featured image credits/NATIVE