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M2KaNE (Mihlali Tukani) has expressed how his previous EP “The Heartist”, provoked a period of rapid self-actualisation that resulted in his newest release “Cardiology: The Pretape”. Although less aggressive and more pensive than previous works, the album undoubtedly compensates with, shall we say, more heart, with free-flowing choruses and experimental timbres.
The album confronts an extensive array of topics from self-confidence to exploitation and blissful ignorance. Opener ‘Heartistry – Crossroads’ is all about regaining strength after falling. Similar patterns of rehabilitation are covered in ‘Believe’ and ‘Leaves’, also touching on one’s reaction to criticism, scrutiny and self-progression. It’s clear that Tukani’s latest focal points stem from effective reflection.
We’re all very well aware of how all-consuming love can be and Tukani is no exception. ‘Can’t Let Go’, the emotive ‘Anxiety’ and ‘Baybee’ all explore the varying dynamics of relationships, emphasised by striking instrumental accompaniments. Endlessly diverse, Tukani’s lyricism explores further into the unethical exploitation of creatives in ‘Exposure’ and inhumane conditions of capitalism in ‘Nine To ‘vive’ and ‘White Money’.
Although the latter highlights our reasons for work may only span to wages or consumption as opposed to real fulfilment, the album is embellished by beautiful timbres only a man who loves what he does could create. Atmospheric synth pads drive ‘Longevity’ forward while “Leaves’ and ‘The Heart’ incorporate disorientatingly-choral instrumentals.
Tukani’s somewhat menacing, reverb-soaked vocals complement his contrasting sections in such a peculiar way, it leaves the listener completely unaware of what’s coming next. If “Cardiology: The Pretape” is a prequel, M2KaNE’s debut full-length might just aspire to a variety of tastes.
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Listen to “Cardiology: The Pretape” here.