Juls drops a banging project "Sounds Of My World". Julian Nicco-Annan, better known by his stage name Juls, is a British-Ghanaian record producer, disc jockey, and musician.
He is considered one of the pioneering producers of African music in the diaspora, particularly in Afrobeats circles. The project featured artists like Wizkid, Agent Sasco, JAEL, Jaz Karis, George the Poet, Haile, Niniola, King Promise, Fireboy DML, Bas, Mannywellz, Knucks, Joey B, Darkovibes, Kadiata, Prettyboy D-O, Supect OTB, Sauti Sol, Mayra Andrade, A2, Oxlade, Kojo Funds, Projexx, and Tay Iwar.
“I would say music is a fruit of life,” Juls tells Apple Music. “There are many fruits of life that we learn to take in and help us, in one way or another, to either get by or stay in a good place. Music is definitely one.” On his debut album Sounds of My World, the UK-based Ghanaian producer, DJ and multi-instrumentalist recruits a fresh, colourful batch of rising artists and trusted collaborators (including Wizkid, Sauti Sol, Jaz Karis, Fireboy DML, and Niniola). “After [2019 mixtape] Colour, I started making new beats as soon as it was done,” he says. “I had a studio built from scratch. And that’s my world, where I discover new sounds. This is an expression of all my mind is going through.” The album forms a dazzling love letter to traditional sounds from Africa—from Ghanaian highlife to South African amapiano via silky-smooth Afrobeat—all filtered through innovative global lenses. “I always want it to be different to the next and the next and the next,” he says of his thirst for bold experimentation. “I don't want any particular sound, because then I’ll feel like I've already done it before.” Here, Juls takes us through his kaleidoscopic album, track by track.
“Close to Me” (feat. Wizkid, Agent Sasco [Assassin] & JAEL)
This is dictating the vibe. It started off slow, and then picked up along the way. Jaël, Wizkid, and Agent Sasco link up with Juls for Close To Me.
“Summer in the Ends” (feat. Jaz Karis & George the Poet)
With a touch of poetry and amapiano, Juls, Jayz Karis, and George the Poet create magic in Summer in the Ends.
“Makossa Riddim” (feat. Haile)
“The title is an indirect tribute to [Cameroonian musician] Manu Dibango, who released a song called ‘Soul Makossa’—which is a genre of music from Africa that has this certain groove. So my guitarist came in and played a similar groove, I’ve flipped and given it an amapiano sound, then Haile came in, adding a Caribbean vibe. So, if you listen closely, you’ll realize so many cultures that can relate to this song.”, said Juls. Makossa Riddim is a beautiful amapiano melody.
“Love Me” (feat. Niniola)
Love Me gives a Kuti-family-type vibe—I can definitely see something like this being played live at the [New Afrika] Shrine.
“My Size” (feat. King Promise, DarkoVibes & Joey B)
Ghana's greatest export, Joey Band Darkovibes partners with Juls for My Size.
“Intentionally” (feat. Fireboy DML)
In Internationally, Juls partners with Fireboy DML in what seems to be one of my favourite songs on this album. The melody, instrumental and lyrics are all on point.
“Wish You” (feat. Bas & Mannywellz)
Here is Wish You a groovy afrobeats tune from Juls featuring Bas and Mannywellz.
“Wicked” (feat. Knucks, kadiata & Sam Wise)
This track Wicked continues the energy in terms of that uptempo baile funk vibe, but he added some garage elements to it. This track is bouncy, it’s youthful and quirky, and even though a lot of the young kids like it.
“Alarm” (feat. Prettyboy D-O & Suspect OTB)
Prettyboy D-O and Suspect OTB joins Juls in the studio to drop a banging freestyle tagged Alarm. The heavy drums on this record makes it all sexy and amazing.
“Mare” (feat. Sauti Sol)
Kenyan band, Sauti tries something a little bit different, to give a reggae feel to it, like old-school Shabba Ranks and Super Cat-style. Mare is a dope record.
“Love Language” (feat. Mayra Andrade)
Love Language is spiritual. The groove, melody, and vocals from Mayra Andrade are spectacular.
“Say You Love Me” (feat. A2, Karun & Xenia Manasseh)
Kenyan singers, Xenia Manasseh and Karun, started this one. The slow-paced melody shows off the duet and their vocals bouncing off each other. Say You Love Me is one of my favourites on this project.
“Melly Melly” (feat. Oxlade)
Oxlade and Juls create magic on this beautiful highlife instrumental. In Melly Melly, Oxlade ended up adding a bounce to this that’s reminiscent of [traditional] Igbo music, in a way.
“M.O.O.D” (feat. Kojo Funds)
M.O.O.D is a fire tune. The vibe on this tune is addictive. Juls and Kojo Funds combination is a cheat for sure.
“Chance” (feat. Projexx & Tay Iwar)
Projexx and Tay Iwar link up with Juls for this reggae-vibe melody. This is so Jamaican than you can ever imagine. Chance is a big vibe.
Lyrics - 3/5
Production - 4/5
Performance - 4/5
AVERAGE RATING - 3.5/5