Afro-pop sensation, Mr Eazi has unveiled his highly-anticipated debut album, titled The Evil Genius, via Empawa Africa. The album, a culmination of his journey, takes listeners on a voyage through diverse locations, each contributing to the album’s distinctive sound and themes. It was recorded in a multitude of cities, spanning Ouidah and Cotonou in Benin, Kigali in Rwanda, Accra and Kokrobite in Ghana, Lagos in Nigeria, London, Los Angeles, and New York City.
The Evil Genius is a deeply personal endeavor for Mr Eazi, delving into themes like love, betrayal, loneliness, and family. The album is ingeniously structured into three distinct acts, each resonating with its own unique emotions.
Collaborations with a range of talented artists enhance the project’s vibrancy. Notable features include Angelique Kidjo from Benin, Tekno from Nigeria, Efya from Ghana, Whoisakin from Nigeria, Joeboy from Nigeria, and the three-time Grammy-winning Soweto Gospel Choir from South Africa. A group of accomplished producers have contributed to the album’s production, including Kel-P from Nigeria, Knucks from the U.K., Michael Brun from Haiti, Andre Vibez from Nigeria, Yung Willis from Nigeria, Nonso Amadi from Nigeria/Canada, KillBeatz from Ghana, M.O.G Beatz from Ghana, E Kelly from Nigeria, Type A from Nigeria, Stikmatik from the U.K., Phantom from Nigeria, Beat Butcha from the U.K., Venna from the U.K., KDream from Nigeria, and Mr Eazi himself.
In a groundbreaking fusion of African music and art, Mr Eazi took a unique approach to the album’s visuals. He commissioned visual artists from across the African continent to create individual art pieces, each representing one of the album’s 16 tracks. This collaboration between the music and art world was a first of its kind, bridging the gap between Africa’s flourishing pop music scene and its fine art creators. Mr Eazi personally handpicked 13 artists from eight African countries for this innovative project, adding the role of art curator and patron to his already impressive list of achievements.
To introduce this art-music fusion to the public, Mr Eazi has hosted multi-sensory exhibition listening experiences. The first two events took place in Accra, Ghana, at Gallery 1957, and in the U.K. during the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair at Somerset House in London, from October 12 to 15.
For the album’s cover art, Mr Eazi collaborated with renowned Nigerian stylist, designer, and photographer Daniel Obasi, known for his work with global icons like Beyoncé and Louis Vuitton. This collaborative effort brought a distinct visual identity to the project, further solidifying Mr Eazi’s innovative approach to music and art.
Listen to The Evil Genius here.