When you are a leader, it is incumbent on you to do two things: help preserve the legacy bequeathed to you and build upon it to a desired level AND also, speak against those who are doing their bit to derail or deface the beautiful image you all love and cherish.
For many times, critics of hip life have bemoaned its current state, where mediocrity is winning against quality, an anathema to what was the case when hiplife began nearly 20 years ago. Currently, real rappers who display high quality lyricism, great wordplay and awesome styles are overlooked and those with limited or literally no talent are getting all the recognition.
And this trend seems to have incensed Sarkodie. Undoubtedly the biggest rapper in modern hiplife history and a leader of this generation of rappers, Sarkodie has addressed the subject of mediocrity in music on his new song Take It Back, with its accompanying video.
On the song, Sarkodie calls on his fellow rappers to eschew weak raps and step up their lyrical qualities as was the case back then. And he attributes this new phenomena to how easy it is for rappers to put out works (technology) unlike decades ago when an opportunity to step in the booth meant rappers bringing the best to bear on beats.
Take It Back sees Sarkodie returning to hip hop mode-banging beats courtesy Magnom and MikeMillz; hard hitting truths and energy. He set the stage for what was to come courtesy a Neo telephone message to the Machines in The Matrix movie.
Sarkodie pays homage to the pioneers whose lyrics inspired his likes to pick up the mic. Mentions include Reggie Rockstone, Obrafour, Nkasei, Tic Tac, Okra Tom Dawidi Paa, Dogo,Aletse Tinny and also DJ Black whose Cypher features only the lyrically endowed rappers.
But, in the talents of a new crop of rappers such as Pappy Kojo, Donzy, Kofi Kinaata, TeePhlow, Strong Man, Sarkodie sees the saviours of hiplife. He further admonishes rappers to go back to sharpening their lyrics, deliveries and art like the legends before them; legends whose hardwork, talents and lyricism inspired them to pick up the mic when young.
Skull heads with headphones on, a gramophone blurring Neo’s message to the machines (The Matrix), a burning placard with a ‘Weak Flow’ inscription, an all Star Converse with Sark and Take It Back written on and many other other aesthetics, Alexx Adjei and Sarkodie capture the theme of the song.
The opening scene of the video sees a diamond pin on a vinyl and a gramophone. Next comes a quick glimpse of Sarkodie and friends nodding to the beat. A converse with the name of the artiste and song title comes on screen before the video fully rolls.
Alexx Adjei, who directed the video, captures everything in black- black backdrop, dark silhouette, dark clothes won by the artiste and those who made appearances and even images of those he mentioned. Images of Reggie Rockstone, DJ Black, Obrafour and others mentioned in the song were thrown in the video for those unaware of them to note.
The choreography was highly energetic, well- orchestrated, excellently executed by the dancers and largely hip hop by the dancers. For a detailed breakdown of Take It Back video, I’ll defer to ’s very own video reviewer @