ALBUM REVIEW: Nox - Chapter 3 (2007)

Nox is a household name in Zimbabwean Urban Grooves with 3 albums under his belt to date. Having risen to prominence in 2004 after a well worked single in Maria which was produced and also released on the compilation by Roy & Royce entitled New Discoveries, Nox has gone from strength to strength. Maria also featured on his debut album, Wandipengesa (2005) which did very well on the charts. He has featured on all Chigutiro compilations with hit songs like Chigutiro Anthem and many more.

Chapter 3 is the last offering from Nox which boasts of a star studded cast from the Chigutiro Family and others. The hit song of the album is Ndinoshuwa featuring Leonard Mapfumo. This song has been well received by the Zimbabwean community and the video gets regular airtime on national TV. It is a smooth song with some exceptional vocals from Nox singing about missing parental love after losing his parents. It is a touching journey about growing up with relatives and lacking that influence to succeed but otherwise leaving it in God’s hands. This song is definitely one that will go further than being a good listen. Sanii Makhalima’s production prowess is beyond phenomenal on this song.

I am particularly intrigued by the song Africa which has 2 different beats on the one song. I think Nox has a far more mature approach to music than most urban artists and can comfortably sing about other topics other than love. Africa is an influential piece about Africa’s potential which is yet to be tapped. It encourages people to get up and work hard to realize their dreams. Washanduka is a lovely song with a beat that will make you rewind the song over and over again, even though the song is a bit sad being about love gone wrong with a partner no longer interested in the other, it is still quite enjoyable. I have always maintained that Nox does not have the strongest singing voice but he knows exactly what his voice can do and he does it brilliantly and sweetly. I also liked the song featuring Urban Grooves prettiest lady Diana Samkange called Nerudo which sounds heavily house influenced. Nox also did the unexpected and engages in an RnB rendition of James Chimombe’s hit song Kudakwashe in which he features Blush and Trevor Dongo.

This album is littered with hits and it is not hard to see why. Songs like Musadaro adopt a zouk kizomba feel that has been dominant in French, Portuguese and Spanish speaking nations across the world. The gem has a Caribbean feel that is nothing short of addictive. Other songs to watch out for are Sarudzai, the TBA produced Dai Muripo featuring Alexio and the very very well done Nguva Ichauya featuring the sweet voice of Cindy Raw. This album marks Nox as one of Zimbabwe’s best urban vocalists at the moment and looks like he is not giving up his spot anytime soon! This one is definitely worth the buy if you are into RnB influenced Urban Grooves from people like Alexio, Ngonie, Sanii Makhalima and Trevor Dongo.

Music - 7/10
Mixing & Mastering - 6/10 (not uniform, you can tell songs were recorded in different studios by different people)
'I Like' Factor - 6/10