Chizzy’s first full-length offering The Heart of Winter pushes a bold sound that places the rapper’s talent front and centre

Rudi Alexander, stage name Chizzy, is pushing an interesting blend of soul, R&B and pop, looking to his own life and his past experiences as inspiration for the music he makes.

Founder of Gated Community Music Group, an independent record label based in George, Chizzy has signed up-and-coming artists such as Finesse, Cardo and Parry Picasso, and is on the rise himself too, his first solo album The Heart of Winter a well-realised offering.

Released earlier this month, the album comes three years after his debut track “Summer Breezes”, which recalled a familiar kind of American hip-hop embodied by artists like Drake. Although Chizzy seems to have moved away from that sound now.

Opener “Party’s Over” hinges on a sweetly lo-fi instrumental backing, Chizzy’s quivering voice perfectly completing the sparse rhythms. “Whistle” (feat. Finesse SA) opens in similar fashion, progressively pushing a harder trap sound that puts Chizzy’s flow front and centre.

But it’s album highlight “Not Nice”, featuring E-JayCPT, that is a bold success, exploring Chizzy’s darker and more unapologetic side.

Drawing lyrically on Chizzy’s past relationships, infatuation and friendships, The Heart of Winter is an impressive first full-length offering, and while Chizzy may not yet have achieved a truly original sound, he’s well on his way to finding it.

Feature pic supplied by artist.