“Quiet room when the penny drops!”
This is the quiet before the storm, there are truths that few will speak but Kojey Radical has already prepared the groundwork with certain precision for the real in the bitter spirits and bitter endz we endure during the hard grind. ’23 Winters an EP by Kojey Radical’ commands a quiet room, the quietness that requires your full attention to take in the singular lone voice of this striving poet “trying to make a penny out of this art shit.”
Premiered by the stalwart of rap ‘The Source‘ magazine, after featuring as their ‘British Artists to Watch’, Kojey isn’t speaking to someone else’s tune, he’s speaking from a platform that’s as real and true to his own British/Ghanian identity as it is to his own unique artistry.
23Winters emerges consciously from a post-colonial, post-capitalist, post-poetry proclamation that starts from a seed and grows into a man out of men, from a generation left out in the cold with no real ‘security’ whatsoever to count on. In Britain, where politicians scramble to preach a message of security and sovereignty whether as a single state or part of a greater power, in it’s midst so many questions remained unanswered for the ones who remain arguably confounded and left in the margins, unsafe and insecure.
Previewing ‘Kwame Nkrumah’ days earlier, Kojey likened himself to the first Ghanian president, living out the context of his legacy in a lineage that contributes to defining his personal identity as both a young man and as artist. Self awareness to the point of not feeling the need to pander to outside approval, Kojey’s inner strength speaks through his body of work – “I understand my importance as artist, I didn’t come to simply fit in I came to make a difference. The truth doesn’t have a language, it speaks to everyone. Worldwide. We don’t have to seek approval in order to be great, greatness is state of mind. Thought without action is empty.”
Radical speaks his mind over progressive sounds from a league of new-age British and European producers, who compliment Kojey’s craft like KZ The Producer, Lupus Cain, Fwdslxsh, Selvsse, Niels Kirk and New Machine. Fused with cinematic strings from Lupus Cain, haunting vocals from Ray BLK and Bobii Lewis earth shattering drums, live instrumentation – the finesse is in the details.
If you’re just discovering Kojey Radical, take your time and ruminate on this EP, it isn’t a quick fix to turn up to, it’s the rising blood in our veins, nothing short of an innovative listening experience. Translated beyond form and function, Kojey’s performances are an extension of his living, breathing, spirit within the post-modern condition.
“It’s been two years since my last project and i’m thankful and appreciative for everything it accomplished. I didn’t think it would take me this long to put out another project but I like to give my music room to grow and resonate… and I had a lot of living to do but I’m ready now. This project will encapsulate my growth into a young man turning 23 and how each year made my outlook on life a little colder. It really centres around the conversations and advice i’d receive from my dad and is easily my most honest work to date.”
This is just the beginning – with ’23 Winters’ past there are ’23 Winters’ ahead – “They look at me like the winner now, because I had a dream and I chased it. I thought that running was the easy part, it’s really much harder maintaining.”