At the age of 18, Korede Bello secured a record deal with Mavin Records, and within the same year, he played a pivotal role in creating wildfire hit songs like ‘DOROBUCCI’ and ‘ADA OBI’. Swiftly, he established himself as a heartthrob with his signature afro hairstyle. He embodied the image of the boy next door, the kind your mother would eagerly approve of as a friend and a potential suitor. His voice, reminiscent of honey, effortlessly delivered memorable hooks in songs like ‘GODWIN’ and ‘DO LIKE THAT’.
The public began to appreciate his distinct fusion of Afrobeat, pop, and R&B influences, a blend that was evident in his debut single ‘Belloved’. However, at the pinnacle of his career, Korede Bello temporarily shifted his focus to education. He made a triumphant return in 2020, sporting a more mature appearance characterized by a gentlemanly low cut in place of his iconic afro. Despite the change, his voice retained its signature fluidity, and he presented ‘Mi Casa Su Casa’ as part of his second project, the ‘Table for Two EP’.
Now, three years later, he emerges with his second EP and third project. When queried about the EP, he responds, “It all started with a feeling. A feeling to create something people can enjoy. Something that makes the listener feel Blissful and reminds them that they carry Beautiful energy. A feeling of Beauty and bliss. So, I started this project to share beautiful bliss. My team and I made all the songs on this project with love and respect for the listener’s attention and emotions. My life’s mission is to share only what is healing and joyful. Therefore, this project is like a virtual smile and a sonic hug.”
In this context, here are five key takeaways from his latest EP.
ARTISTIC GROWTH AND EVOLUTION
The ‘Beauty and Bliss’ EP stands as a testament to Korede Bello’s journey of artistic growth and evolution. As an established figure in the music industry, Bello ventures beyond his previous releases, demonstrating his commitment to pushing creative boundaries. Serving as a canvas upon which Korede Bello paints a portrait of his musical maturity, highlighting how he has honed his skills and embraced experimentation.
In ‘Belloved,’ his sound was more centred around Afrobeats and traditional pop influences. However, in ‘Beauty and Bliss,’ songs like “YOGA” and “WAY LIFE GOES” incorporate modern production techniques and a fusion of genres. This evolution is palpable not only in the sonic nuances of the tracks but also in the overall conceptual depth of the EP. Bello’s willingness to explore new musical territories while retaining his unique essence reflects an artist dedicated to both innovation and authenticity.
TALES TOLD IN TUNES: COHESIVE MOTIF
The EP’s strength lies in its seamless integration of thematic continuity. Consider the progression of emotions depicted across tracks like “YOGA,” where the lyrics express a desire for connection and union. Then, in “WAITING,” this theme continues as the lyrics touch on patiently waiting for love to materialize. He gets his wish in “FULL TIME” as he basks in guilty pleasures, his rich voice is accompanied by the smooth guitar and the 80s production. The subject matter continuity creates a narrative arc, where listeners can follow the emotional journey and connect the dots between songs to form a complete story.
SONIC ADVENTURES: A KALEIDOSCOPE OF SOUND
‘Beauty and Bliss’ masterfully embraces a rich and diverse sonic palette. The EP showcases an array of musical styles and influences, including classic Afrobeats and urban Afropop. Take, for instance, the energetic and upbeat rhythms of “MARIA,” which stand in stark contrast to the soulful and introspective ambience of “COMPLETE.” These two tracks serve as prime examples, vividly illustrating the breadth of the EP’s rich and diverse sound.
“MARIA” is a marriage of classic Afrobeats and urban Afropop, executed with finesse. On the other hand “COMPLETE” takes a different route, immersing the listener in ethereal soundscapes and spiritual undertones. These dynamic musical approaches demonstrate Korede Bello’s willingness to explore various sonic territories. His collaboration with a variety of producers further amplifies the EP’s sonic diversity, which retains your ears with its freshness and innovation.
The EP’s emotional resonance is a cornerstone of its impact. Korede Bello’s emphasis on raw emotions and cathartic expression creates a space for listeners to connect on a deeply personal level. The tracks delve into themes of love, longing, commitment, and vulnerability, echoing the complexities of human relationships.
“JEJELY” speaks about prioritizing mental health and peace of mind over external achievements. While “WAY LIFE GOES” is a reflection of his journey so far, when he says “But you go soon realize say wetin dey kill monkey na overconfidence because the things wey life go teach you, they no dey read am for school” you can tell that he has experienced his fair share of love and betrayal that has left him wiser and more humble. There’s an authenticity to the way he conveys the message of valuing emotional well-being and acceptance, he sings as someone who has overcome the critical feedback and the pressure to maintain his initial success.
WHISPERS OF BLISS: REFLECTION AND GRATITUDE The final track, “COMPLETE,” serves as a poignant conclusion to the journey undertaken within the EP.
Korede Bello expresses gratitude for the experience of both giving and receiving love. The ethereal production and the lyrics such as “I no know where I for dey if you no dey my side” detail the completeness that love brings. As the music unfolds, it leaves the listener with a sense of emotional closure. It captures the essence of beauty and bliss- A desire to give and receive love.