September 18, 2021

Notable Points Between Masterkraft & Pheelz Battle Of Hits

and Took Different Approaches To Their Battle… For The Fun On The Night [Review]

 and , yesterday, gave us a Battle of the Hits which proved to be more enjoyable than we ever imagined. In an industry where the bulk of the attention goes to the artists, it has become commonplace to think hits come out from nowhere.

With the COVID-19 , we’ve been forced to stay indoors. Some states in Nigeria (prominently Lagos and Abuja) are on lockdown currently. And as our life patterns becomes altered, we seek new ways of entertainment. It’s all on the internet, really. Enough laughter and vibes to keep the boredom away.

That was what and gave us: over two hours of premium entertainment. They also reminded us that producers deserve way more recognition than they get. A hit song doesn’t fall out of the sky, neither does a Davido.

Due to the excitement from the and battle, many people went on Twitter and elsewhere to demand more battles. Different producers were asked to do something similar, as pairs were pitted against each other.

Quickly, another challenge was set: Masterkraft vs. Pheelz. It was a battle bound to be entertaining, as both producers have many hits between them and could combine for 30+ years in the industry.

Slated for 10PM on Wednesday, we kept await, and it happened. Although it began to a series of network/Instagram issues, soon enough, we were able to settle into the battle, as both seasoned producers played songs off their catalogue.

These are our takeaway from the battle between and Pheelz.

the trash talker

One of the highlights of Wednesday night was ’s presumed condescending tone, with his facial expressions and comments (“that’s cute” being the most popular). It was however, a spice up of things on the night, as a too friendly sparring might have dulled things a bit.

Yesterday,  took a similar route, constantly on the offense and finding comebacks to every song with comments like “You Try,” and then going on to say the next song (to be played by him) is bigger. Some standout disses from were:

1. When played “Life is Eazi” and said it wasn’t a hit, then going on to play “Surrender,” an arguably bigger Mr. Eazi song.

2. attempted to use the views of a particular song’s video to attest to its acclaim but dismissed him very humorously and quite intelligently, saying he (Masterkraft) wasn’t the director of the video.

has the range, has the hits

Clearly the older and more versatile of the two artistes, ’s production prodigy go as far back as twenty years, and yesterday night, he showed the range of his catalog.

Sunny Nweke (as is fondly called) played songs from quite a number of artistes, like Pulse, Vector, Chidinma, Phyno, , while , noticeably played more recent songs, albeit he had the hits, with most songs from the YBNL camp and songs from other minority artistes like Teni, Vector, etc. making his set.

This difference in approach was most captured when Masterkraft, ever reliant on nostalgia, played “Fada Fada,” the song which began ’s blaze into the upbeat Igbo worship subgenre. For a comeback, played “Onyeoma,” a newer song realized from the fiber of the -produced track.

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We do not have a metric for hits

Over the night, both producers (mostly Pheelz) would attempt to playfully downplay the opponent’s song by suggesting it wasn’t a hit. “Obiagu,” the -produced song, gave an exciting time to the streamers. No doubt helped by its vintage Highlife production, it was also on the soundtrack of Genevieve Nnaji’s Lionheart, a film which generated huge buzz in Nigeria and beyond. However,  felt it wasn’t a hit.

Many came for him. To them, he was reaching. But it leaves important questions to be asked. Will Pheelz, a 25-year old who spends a lot of time with Street Hop acts and their music, know “Obiagu” as a hit? What was its impact in, say, Mushin or Lagos Island?

Ultimately, what we term “a hit” is determined by a number of factors but for now, those are all opinion-based. Unlike the charts and all that, we do not a solid metric for determining a hit song.

Important messages/moments on the live stream

Obviously, the most important moment on the live stream was also its most emotional: the beautiful moment when “Jawo Jawo” came on and said a tribute to Goldie. The messages of “RIP Goldie” which filled the screen was an emotional moment for me; in these times, as we’re to be emphatic and remember our music icons, their music, and how fiercely we once loved them.

Another was the frequent mention of “social distancing” and sometime along the stream,  sanitized his hands. It might have been a gesture of slight mischief but it was an important message being passed. It was the both of them being culturally aware and sweet.

“Make de no forget say Baddo na baba”

 has a lot of hits – he’s arguably the greatest hit maker of his generation.

As  reminded us with songs like Yemi My Lover, Awon Goons Mi, Abule Sowo and a host of others, Baddo na baba, and his name should never be disrespected.

is an OG, is a young king

 arguably has the most versatile catalog amongst his producer peers. With production credits in genres like Highlife, Gospel, afrobeats, Dancehall, Street Hop, he showed streamers yesterday just why he’s Sunny Nweke.

, it should be said, is young, younger than in the business but he has one of the strongest catalogs amongst his mates. As a proof of his genius, had begun laying beats for when he was 18, and went on to define the high energy Street Hop and Hip Hop sound which marked ’s music at the time.

The battle hit an all-time high number of viewers

At some point during the battle between the premium beat makers, live streamers/viewers soared up to twenty one thousand. In some points, it soared even higher, as celebrity attendees like Davido, Vector, Major Bangz, Peruzzi, Asisat Oshoala, DJ Enimoney, M.I Abaga, and many others turned up for the epic clash.

Even higher than and numbers, this means more people are paying attention; no doubt a plus.

In allwe got great content. It feels so good doing these. More importantly, we should know it works to the growth of the culture when we give producers their due flowers. Yesterday night,  and  kept up with the fire started by  and .

Who’s next?

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