The music market is heavy with anticipation for hits from big name artists as Soldier Lucius Banda’s 17th album comes face to face with Maskal’s second and the return of Chileka-based trio this year.
While the Black Missionaries as well as their playmates Moda Fumulani and Anthony Makondetsa are not sure when their offerings will land, Lucius has reportedly been in studio since January to record Time which is earmarked to be on the shelves in August.
In an interview, the self-styled Soldier of the Poor said he has engaged top producersâ€”Lulu, Taps Bandawe and Ralph Ching’ambaâ€”to craft the album which promises a departure from an anti-government tirade that characterised his music throughout the late Bingu wa Mutharika’s regime.
He said the August due date was conceived to honour the dead dictator whom he blasts in the current album Life in the name of â€œactive citizenshipâ€. He likened his anti-Mutharika vibe to war.
“I am concentrating more on gospel messages.Â For me, it’s like an army going to war; you prepare your arsenal and other strategy, but suddenly the war is won and you must align yourself with new realities,” says Lucius Banda, whose music was banned on State-funded media houses for four years until Joyce Banda succeeded Mutharika in April this year.
He refused that the timing of his album and those from other heavyweights speaks volumes of the clutter which leaves the market congested and buyers confused. He says it does not matter that most giants prefer releasing their productions between July and December because he is a standalone brand.
“Travellers who go by a certain busline will always do so even if many other buses are going on the same route,” he said.
Equally defiant was Maskal, who assured Chill that the follow-up of his successful debut is due this year come what may.
“It’s two years since I released Nthawi and I don’t want to starve my fans. I am not shaken by the names on the market because I believe music should speak for itself amid competition,” said Maskal.
A reliable source said the Udalire hitmaker’s suspense is meant to pave the way for his Nde’feyo Entertainment labelmate and Wa CV songmate Piksy who gears for the launch of his first solo album with a concert at Gymkhana Club in Zomba on Sunday afternoon.
On the other hand, uncertainty hovers over Chileka as Black Missionaries leader Anjiru Fumulani says Kuimba 9 will only come after Makondetsa’s album.
“That’s how we operate. As members of one family, we cannot go on the market the same time as if we were competing against each other,” said Anjiru.
However,Â Makondetsa said he is still in studio and the heir to his Mbumba ya Abraham hit has been delayed due to Ching’amba’s recent trip to South Africa where he recorded Uganda’s Rob Prophet with the help of the Blacks’ instrumentalistsâ€”Paul and TakudziwaniÂ Chokani.
Elsewhere, Lulu is set to release Patience this year.