Album Reviews

Born In The Wild By Tems: Perfect Debut, Perfect Timing

The 18-track LP was released on June 6, 2024, with production credits to Tems, Spax, Sarz, London, GuiltyBeatz, Nsikak David, DameDame*, and P2J.

Tems Born in the Wild Review i.e Tems Born in the Wild album Review
Tems [PHOTO CREDIT: Instagram/@temsbaby]

Nigerian singer-songwriter and record producer Temilade Openiyi, best known as Tems, is undoubtedly one of Africa’s finest artists in the modern African music ecosystem. Her debut album Born in the Wild is a testament to her rare versatility and breathtaking talent.

Tems’ career caught fire in 2020 following her collaboration with Wizkid on the critically acclaimed summer hit single Essence from his fourth studio album Made in Lagos. The song peaked at number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart following the release of the remix version featuring Justin Bieber. Prior to Essence, Tems was already on the rise in the Nigerian music scene with singles like Looku Looku and Try Me, both released in 2019.

In 2020, the Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter, and music producer Tems released her debut extended play For Broken Ears. The project was critically acclaimed, showcasing her unique songwriting prowess and alluring vocals in songs like Damages and Free Mind.

Her second extended play, If Orange Was a Place (2021), featuring tracks like Crazy Things and Found with American singer Brent Faiyaz, followed after she signed a record deal with RCA Records. Tems was listed as a featured artist with Drake in 2022 when Future sampled her vocals from her song Higher for his smash Wait For U. When the song debuted at number one on the Billboard Hot 100, she became the first African singer to do so, as well as the second Nigerian artist. The song won her a Grammy Award for Best Melodic Rap Performance. That same year, she collaborated with Drake Fountains on his Certified Lover Boy album.

Following the release of the GuiltyBeatz-produced Me & U alongside Not An Angel in 2023, Tems dropped Love Me Jeje, an afro-fusion record produced by Spax and GuiltyBeatz, in April 2024, just a few weeks before the release of her debut album Born in the Wild. The 18-track LP was released on June 6, 2024, with production credits to Tems, Spax, Sarz, London, GuiltyBeatz, Nsikak David, DameDame*, and P2J.

The album launches with Born in the Wild, an acoustic gem produced by the dynamic duo Tems and GuiltyBeatz. Tems brings an intimate touch to the project by featuring her mother in the Special Baby (Interlude), where her mom reminisces about Tems’ childhood, imparting heartfelt advice and encouragement.

Burning stands out as a groovy anthem, meticulously crafted to elevate your day. The soothing beats coupled with Tems’ extraordinary vocals create a therapeutic soundscape, perfect for navigating through a busy day.

Wickedest, another stellar collaboration between Tems and GuiltyBeatz, features an interpolation of Magic System’s Premier Gaou, while Love Me Jeje pays homage to Seyi Sodimu’s classic with its own unique sample.

On Get it Right, Tems employs the services of Asake on a mid-tempo Sarz-produced afro-fusion record. Get it Right is a groovy tune with a spice of amapiano on a party banger.

Songs like Ready, Gangsta and Unfortunate are properly synced. You can tell these three songs where the easiest to be arranged on track. The beats, story, and mood all suit one another. While Ready and Unfortunate was produced by GuiltyBeatz, Gangsta though sampling L-L-L Lies by Dianna King was produced by Spax. 

Boy O Boy and Forever showcase two contrasting facets of Tems’ musical prowess, like two sides of the same coin. Boy O Boy is an acoustic gem featuring the mesmerizing guitar work of Nsikak David, with additional production from Guilty Beatz, creating a rich, textured sound. On the other hand, Forever is a midtempo pop track with a nostalgic Westlife-meets-Michael Jackson vibe, confirming Tems’ remarkable versatility and ability to thrive across diverse genres.

Produced by P2J, Free Fall could be another classic on this album. The afro-fusion track features American rapper and record producer, J. Cole.

Turn Me Up is a track I never expected to find on a Tems album, and it’s an absolute revelation. This up-tempo banger, laced with reggae adlibs, is a complete vibe from start to finish. Produced by the talented London and penned by Michael Hunter alongside Tems, Turn Me Up distinctly shines on this project, emerging as one of its rare gems.

In summary, Tems’ Born in the Wild couldn’t have been better. Aside from the sequencing that could have been better, its production and delivery is surely what is expected from a world-class superstar like Tems. On listening to the 18-tacks LP album, one could tell Tems gave this album every iota of attention it required. Born in the Wild is as perfect as it gets.

Tems Born in the Wild review
Review Overview

On listening to the 18-tacks LP album, one could tell Tems gave this album every iota of attention it required. 'Born in the Wild' is as perfect as it gets.

  • Songwriting 9
  • Production 9
  • Sequence 8
  • Enjoyability 7
  • Delivery9
Stream 'Born in the Wild' album by Tems

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