OORO: Will Nameless & Wahu Release Huge New Album In 2024?

With more and more music being released every single day, it’s a near-impossible task to keep track of everything that’s coming.

OORO: Will Nameless & Wahu Release Huge New Album In 2024?
Celebrity couple Nameless and Wahu Kagwi. /THE STAR

By Ooro George

The Kenyan music industry has indeed grown in leaps and bounds over the last 25 years.

With more and more music being released every single day, it’s a near-impossible task to keep track of everything that’s coming. From gengetone to afro-pop to RnB to Hip Hop, the choices made available feel endless – not to mention vinyl, re-releases and collectable editions.

Musically, the last three years were the best to time being alive- they were all about album releases. We had multiple hit-making Kenyan artistes like Nyashinski, H_art The Band, Avril, Sauti Sol and Femi One releasing their critically-acclaimed studio albums.

Singer Bahati raised eyebrows with a change in musical style, officially ditching gospel music by releasing a contemporary album with a suggestive album cover in which he and a video model pose in a seductive embrace.

Rapper Nyashinski. /FILE

But we’re not done yet, 2024 has some huge unannounced dates for Kenya’s musical diary with releases that we can’t wait to hear.

Of the yet-to-be-launched musical projects, I’ve picked out The MZs album, Nameless and Wahu's joint release that could/should/probably won’t but hopefully will materialize. Fingers crossed!

It’s hard to recall the last time a Kenyan artist generated so much expectation for an album. Quite a lot has changed in the world since Nameless last released an album, with ‘On Fire’, the debut album that catapulted him to stardom, arriving in what now feels like the positively ancient times of 2004.

This is by far the longest shot, but fans have been desperate for King Monski to reclaim his throne. It’s been exactly 20 years since ‘On Fire’, and the speculation that something new is in the works has been pretty much constant ever since his disclosure of project B4iR back in 2014. 

It could well have been an indication that a new album was imminent, but all we’ve had has been a handful of singles like ‘African Beauty’‘Butterfly’‘Letigo’‘Inspire’‘Voloyum’, ‘Pah’, and airy quotes from those close to the Nairobi-bred crooner that the project might appear soon. Sigh.

As a singing couple, where do you go after being together for a quarter of a century and churning out tens of chart-topping MTV Award-scooping singles? For the Mathengez (Nameless and Wahu), the answer is backwards.

In 2021, the celebrity couple announced they would be co-producing their soon-to-be-released ‘Mz’ album short for Mathengez, not only to signify their two-decade respective music careers but also weave the colourful story of love and relationships.

It will also include the ups and downs, successes and failures, and happy and sad moments. The couple will also share their relationship journey through this album as they tell the story behind the music.

According to the husband-and-wife entertainers, the MZ Album Project carries a variety of sounds and topics and the team will strive to release a single every month or so, as they build up to release the full album. Regardless of whether you love them or loathe them, it's hard to deny their influence stretches far and wide. 

Now, it looks like the joint album might finally be on the horizon, with a release in the second half of 2024 almost certain. 

'Feeling’, a three-minute love ballad written by up-and-coming artist Brandon Israel, Birech, and produced by acclaimed superstar producer Cedo -- is among the lead singles off the upcoming album that is set to pack in 12 tracks. 

With the duo’s ability to wrap dense lyricism around their multifaceted instrumentals, it certainly seems like this will be a collection of songs with plenty to say. 

Ooro George is a Kenyan journalist, art critic, digital stories, and cross-cultural curator. You can reach him via LinkedIn here, through email: [email protected] and on Twitter @OoroGeorge

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Musician Nameless at Vybez Radio studios on September 29, 2022. /INSTAGRAM.NAMELESS KENYA