South African hip-hop started rewriting the rules not too long ago. Our scene is no longer following patterns made in the global north. We don’t have to anymore. It’s all grown up and blazing its own vernacular path. And it’s because of this mentality that Cape Town hailing Bvse (pronounced Base), is able to release an EP as a “prelude” to an upcoming album.
It’s called TLC Prelude: Pretty Girl Package and is perfect for your next exploratory hip hop playlist. The project has an interesting texture to it. The style meandering between trip hop and trap. Much of the lyrical content focuses on Bvse’s relationship with love and how it has shaped his life – “Drugs or Love” is a track that highlights just that, while “My Mind” is a bare look at obsession that helps narrate the story of the EP as a whole. And some rather interesting features appear on the project, too. Xhosa Joburg local, King Joe is up on “Mabona Kude”, with Ta Eish featuring on “Cash Out”.
While doing a prelude to an album is a fresh concept, there are moments where Bvse’s vocals on TLC Prelude: Pretty Girl Package are let down by typical autotune trap tropes. It doesn’t detract from a solid effort, though. Put it on and go for a long drive.
Feature pic supplied by artist