One of the reasons Laycon was really loved as a housemate in the Big Brother Naija reality show was how he could articulate his intelligence with the use of words. The rapper didn’t fall any inch short of expectation on his critically acclaimed debut album ‘Shall We Begin’.
He released his debut LP, ‘Shall We Begin’, on 30 April 2021. Taking into account that his last project before this was dubbed an introductory ‘Who is Laycon’- his 4th project in as many years, ‘Shall We Begin‘ feels like a foretelling of what the rapper expects from his career.
However, was a debut album the next step in his career? Clearly, the answer is an emphatic yes. He has not only weaved an interesting 12-track project but has also done enough to show that there’s a next-level he can still morph into.
He seems ready for the next step in his career and starts off the project with a prayer from his mother on ‘And so she spoke’ before going full head-on into creating beautifully crafted songs for the rest of the project howbeit with sterling collaborations from his industry counterparts.
Laycon from the onset has been perceived to be this calm, laid back, genuine, not so charismatic rapper, however, he shows he can be any and everything at once on his new project.
The entire project appears to be a well-thought-out body of work with a wide array of relatable themes ranging from love, relationships, being happy, partying, self-confidence to name a few.
On his previous body of work, ‘Who is Laycon?’, he referred to himself as ‘God in a human body’, and while many must have thought it was a mere picture from his imagination, he was more emphatic and assured on the second track of the album– God body. The rapper said, “God is me and I am Him“.
Maybe his rise to fame contributed to his new and assured self on the brand new project, his wordplay on ‘God Body’ was everything!.
He might not be so much of a show-off but the industry calls for a little bit of braggadocio at the very least and Laycon didn’t make a mess of it on ‘Verified’ featuring Mayorkun. A sweet and easy to sing along tune.
Laycon made sure to remind everyone of his verified status with his line, ‘Shey you see we dey verified’. Also, he made sure not to overstretch beyond his true self noting that ‘Social media no be real life‘ on the same track– a sound warning to all social media enthusiasts.
Very enjoyable track to be honest. The collaboration was inch-perfect too.
He employs the rampaging Amapiano sound on the following track ‘All Over Me’ and a special credit has to be given to his team at this point. The transition from one track to another is just too sleek. The arrangement of the songs makes for a really enjoyable listening session.
Love took center stage on ‘Kele’ featuring Joeboy. The duo found a perfect balance on the track and it’s one of the most enjoyable tracks on ‘Shall We Begin’.
‘Kele’ enjoins you to appreciate the woman in your life.
Laycon’s renowned calmness returns for the mellow ‘Jeje’ with the lyricism he’s known also beckoning for more. He rhymed the entire letters of the alphabet in a very impressive manner while Terri accompanied his lyrical feat with a sonorous effort.
Laycon goes wild on ‘Bam Bam’ as he regales his listeners with tales of sexual dexterity on the track. He even calls himself a sexual enthusiast– just to make it clear.
Teni hardly goes wrong on a song and if there’s ever a top 3 list of songs off Laycon’s ‘Shall We Begin‘ debut LP, ‘Want You Back’ sure has to be in contention.
On the entire project, the chemistry between Laycon and Teni takes the top spot and we can’t wait for them to give us more from where ‘Want You Back’ came from.
The replay value on ‘Shall We Begin’ is huge and the impact of his team cannot be overemphasized. However, despite how expansive and clearly well-thought-out the album is, it’s quite clear that Laycon still has more to offer even as he continues to hone his craft.
He has connected the dots from ‘Who is Laycon?’ to ‘Shall We Begin‘ and now that it has begun, it remains to be seen what the rapper is lining up for the future. One thing is clear though, he has definitely transcended from just being the winner of a reality show to a chart-topping rapper.
The album excels on quality management and production. Laycon plays to his strengths and he was rewarded. The question now is, can he outdo this very impressive effort in the times to come?