With so much soul coming out of the UK, Europe and Australia, it's about time we spread the love and shined some light on some Bounce-Worthy behavior bubbling out of Africa. Nigerian born multi-instrumentalist Emmanuel Bezhiwa Idakula, known professionally as Bez, turns up the temperature with his video for the single "There's a Fire."
Bez's vocals come across natural and clean, much less tampered with than most mainstream pop-R&B acts. Bez's style of soul music is one largely defined by combining Fela Kuti's afro-beat sound with jazz, providing something both fun and musically rich. As a result, his band is a driving force of the sound, not only of the track, but in helping to tell the story of the music video as well.
The video itself was reminiscent of early '90s R&B storytelling, juxtaposing the lyrics of the lead singer against interpretive dancers (a la Arrested Development). The fluid, powerful West African dance from the female solo performer worked well as imagery for the song, especially because she directly represented the love interest of the track. However, I admit the video somewhat lost me with the appearance of a third dancer shrouded in white and the transition into a turned up concert scene, which seemed somewhat a forced necessity to make sure that you knew that it was time to do some dance steps of your own, as if the tempo change wasn't enough of an indication.
Those minor quibbles aside, "There's a Fire" delivers an enticing and engaging set of visuals to accompany the song. Are you ready for Bez's heat? Then press play on "There's a Fire" right here.