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ALBUM REVIEW: M.I – The Chairman

Posted by Jim Donnett on November 5, 2014 in Album reviews · 105 Comments

chairman 3

Artist – M.I Abaga
Album – The Chairman
Features – Chigurl, Koker, Wizkid, Reminisce, Moti Cakes, Emmy Ace, Beenie Man, Nosa, Milli, Olamide, I.J, Patoranking, Phyno, Runtown, Stormrex, Seyi Shay, Ice Prince, Sarkodie, DJ Lambo, Debbie, Morell, Loose Kaynon, Tuface, Sound Sultan, Oritse Femi, Frank Edwards, Nanya
Producers – M.I, L37, Reinhard, Sarz, G-Plus, Pheelz, Sammy Gyang, Vstix
Label – Chocolate City/Loopy Music
Running Time – 75 minutes

I’m just so full of confused excitement or shall I call it excited confusion such that I really don’t know where I should start or start from… see what just happened there?

In order to avoid having to repeat how madt the beats and production on The Chairman turned out, lemme just state here that it was one word “AMAZEBALLS”. Guy took four f***king years to brew some fine a** stinking sh*t for fans and haters… it’s possible that he still has those, yeah? And then 26 features! Pheeuuww.

The concept of this “words and opposite” thang was another level of genius. The industry has never had this and although M.I had given insight as to what to be expected on the album, we really didn’t think it this way. How can titles and contexts be similar and relative to each other but still, styled in such a manner that they can make sense on their own? Everything on The Chairman album really makes me believe that this ‘short black dude’ aspired for a post-messiah status.

1. The Beginning/Nobody: Did you have blaah-dy pessimists for mind shapers while growing up? Big dreamers who ended up as never-do-wells and went on a destiny shooting down spree? MI told this tale beautifully and in the most satirically possible way. And the message is CLEAR!
2. Monkey ft. Chigul:  Humour and wits (yes, I’m talking about the DPJ diss and the nevuurrr hexperrerits) are the build up to this celebratory tune. M.I and Chigul make you jive in ‘kwenu’ or ‘wa do’ style while understanding your you-niqueness.
3. Rich ft. Koker: Sounds preachy, yes. Regardless, it makes for a classic #TurnUp jam still not loosing the consciousness of wanting to be (or stay) rich.
4. Mine ft. Wizkid: Wiz delivered his vocal lines with an eclectic nature. I’m not the only one thinking M.I and Waje had done something like this before, eh?
5. Shekpe ft. Reminisce: First things first, Sarz is a demon. And then Ibile held it down. I was looking for M.I on the track though. No, seriously. I was. Till his verse in Yoruba and I’m like y’all better watch your backs *no names called* Olamide.
6. Bad Belle: Kussssshhh music! Baazing! And what else again? Oh yeah. My least favourite track.
7. Wheel Barrow ft. Emmy Ace & Beenie Man: Why wasn’t Patoranking on this track? That’s all I’m going to say. Emmy Ace was impressive though.
8. Brother ft. Nosa & Milli: The words of this well crafted motivational piece, speaks straight to the heart. Brother has soulful elements to heal. Nosa’s vocal marathons were quite the appeal.
9. The Middle ft. Olamide & I.J: More punch or is it cheesy lines? I’m not sure which exactly. But the excitement of having baddo and Mr Incredible slay a track made me overlook some excesses. Speaking of which, who’s this I.J dude? You like him too, bah?
10. Enemies ft. Patoranking: Oh, this is where he settled. I mean Patoranking. Nothing much here, just that it’s a track for everybody not enemies alone. Go figure!
11. Bullion Van ft. Phyno, Runtown & Storm Rex: Let’s call this the eastern tribute. It’s obvious what they’re known for… spending money foolishly! Ms Rex was breathing life on the track and then it had to end. Phyno, Runtown, M.I – the usual, they’re good.
12. Always Love ft. Seyi Shay: Again, Ms Shay is such a vocal sweetheart. The tune heavily dotes on that M.I and Waje feel, only that it’s better this time but still typical as 2010.
13. Millionaira Champagne ft. Ice Prince, Sarkodie & DJ Lambo: Heat. This record will light things up and burn. Prideful show off of talent too. Confam jam.
14. Yours ft. Milli & Debbie: M.I goes all Bishop Jakes on this production cut that samples futuristic sounds. This Milli kid served some madt flows and the harmonies were sick! Smooooth stuff.
15. Beg ft. Loose Kaynon & Morrell: Did Loose K just wipe down and dry chairman’s hands on his own track? No thanks to M.I’s cheesy/punch lines. Best to just leave it be.
16. Human Being ft. Tuface & Sound Sultan: First. True stuff of legends. Second. The best record on this album. Third. Message clear. Fourth. Nobody better than 2face & Sound Sultan to nail it.
17. The End/The Chairman ft. Oritse Femi, Frank Edwards & Nanya: I’m of the verge that Oritse Femi stole plenty shine on this track. Frank Edwards didn’t exactly come through with his signature pitch sounds until the end and Nanya was relegated to doing background vocals? This closer will earn M.I a couple Oprah-style hugs. “Good for you Jude, good for you!”

I find M.I’s actions in the build up to this release, quite intrepid. But errr, although M.I used his masterpiece to herald a carefully selected few with a variety of talents, the exhaustive work with 26 features puts a heavy question of his sole abilities. At best, his efforts deserve an A for audaciousness, still there was a void created of who credence should be given to especially on tracks where he got served on a platter by his supporting acts. I dare say, arguably though, that The Chairman can wrestle for the title of the industry’s biggest album in 2014, a sentimental blackmail because he is Mr Incredible and we’d waited (or he’d made us wait) four years for this. This doesn’t go without saying that it’s some fine quality stuff that can be whipped out anywhere and it’ll hold it’s own with a little prodding needed.

M.I had this whole thang totally figured out and well planned all this while. In my opinion. Having to bare all his emotional selves;  bruised, happy, angry, depressed, repressed, tortured, tormented… and in their real elements but look where it’s got him standing now. The album is kick a** – coming through only by a flash stroke of hope (luck, I mean).

Sound Sultan Rating

Rating – 2.5/5

Reviewed by Jim Donnett

I have magic in my hands and I'm excited to be sharin' it with the world. Be jimancipated!
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90 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. Confirm album

  2. I don’t really bother about the rest tracks …all I know is …”We be the nigggas wen dey step in d club with a bullion van!!!”

  3. How can you give it 2. 5… not cool

  4. It deserve more dan dat “2.5/5” rating……. Its 4 out of 5!

  5. After 4years, I’m a little disappointed…

  6. stupid ratings from a down syndrome patient…

  7. best album in 2014

  8. This album is a lil bit disappointing… Noting from the choc boiz.. These is his worst from the 3 albums he released.. Abeg the 2.5 sef try

  9. You’re stupid for rating the chairman 2.5! God punish you TX people! Idiot how dare you rate it 2.5! It’s 5pts! 10/10 asin best album ever! God punish the person that rated it 2.5 idiots

  10. Jim Donnet as always been a fool nd biased type…. Upon ur hype! At the end 2.5!!! The album is 4.5/5!! Fact

  11. I was expecting to see features like Kendrick Lamar n Jay-Z…..yea, I was! *smh*

  12. Thank God say na ur own personal review be this, niggas no nothing about music and they are making baseless and unfamthom shit of a review. For ur information chairman is the best album released this year, a classic album that has no equal, forget about the hype the album is the best compair to 2baba, wizkid and psquare. CHAIRMAN CHAIRMAN enough said!

  13. Human being trending in my hood

  14. This tooxclusuve go dey rate pple lyk….Go sing 2 nao..
    hw u go rate chairman 2.5

  15. Human being trending in my hood

  16. Human being trending in my hood

  17. Please the igbos dnt spend money reviewer

  18. Make una all chill for #BADDO album #street OT

    • Wagbayi

  19. dude u must be deaf or u don’t know anything about rap music, after all u said about the album how can it be a 2.5? This is by far the best album in all genres this year and it gets a 2.5? I like but I think they need to get adequate review personnel and not jokers. This album deserves at least 4.0. I have listened to all the albums released this year and non is close to the chairman album in all rights. jim u need to be checked into rehab. 2.5? u are a fucking joke.

  20. tuface and sultan bext on d album ola jox making noise

  21. Best rating so far!!!

  22. Honestly,I’m not wowed by d album…2.5 z not my rating tho,it shud b 3,4 me…I just gotta say my mind coz me sef I be human beign ooo…peace

  23. TX I muist say here that your team got it very wrong on this one…this is by far the best album of 2014…very intellectual,inspiring,intresting…well again u entitiled to ur own rating..u guys are human beings too…safe

  24. It takes time to adjust to d kinda bullsh*t Music dat trends nowadays.. He lashed out a typical sample of almost every kind of Music trending right now. To me I say He’s great; He’s M. And dat settles it. Only album I can compare to his this year, is the NGNG.To my brother M, never met u, but My brother u b Genius. And to the team or individual dat reviewed dis, u’re not so much of a good listener or thinker. Remember, statues are never being raised to Honor a critic. BOSS

  25. Seriously?.. 2.5?.. You must be a joke? .. It deserves a 4.2 at least

    • Real Joker! 2.5/5.0….Common! I rate 4.5/5.0

    • I wan die….This album is at least a 4.5. Are u kidding me? This is the best album of the year. your reviews of each track did not correlate with the star rating. You are actually confused. Please listen to “enemies” and then re-rate this album.

  26. rate anyhow you like nah ur biz.all I know nah billion van sweet me pass.pls no just call igbos foolish spenders again.

  27. Mr jim donought, stop using big big grammers senselessly endlessly if u knw u’ll eventually cme up wit a wack rating, go learn some more about rap music n ratings generally.. Tell ur stories to d marines

  28. Did you just insult the Igbos? Guy be careful, if u don’t want the same Igbos to bring this your fucking blog down, I mean BRING YOU DOWN. You don’t go online and make a careless statement just because you want to entertain your fans. Don’t let the Igbos come after you, you can never ever withstand it, don’t say u were not warned.

    • Sharap.stop… u knw ur father….

      • Ur father didnt u here him say d eastern people spend foolishly young man mind ur words b4 we fall out 4 u real pussy nigga fuck u

  29. This is one of the best albums this yr…wheel barrow,rich,bad bell be mine among my my favourites..infact it’s my 3rd best album

  30. And as for your review stuff. You are very stupid and foolish. You sometime ago rated Wizkid’s album 2/5. Bit the dude’s keeps clminbing ITunes chart up till now. Wizkid is the only Nigerian act that still has album on the top 20 world albums of the year till now(except Olamide whose album is on preorder). So fuck off, your review doesn’t make the fans love or hate the act or the album. What happened to those acts you rated 4/5? Where are their albums now? As a matter of fact, you need to be paying acts like Wizkid and M.I a gratuity, cow without acts like them your blog isn’t gonna do fine you need them. They draw traffic to this blog. If you like, post their music here, they will blow, we the fans will still listen to their songs, FOOL. If you like go to Cambridge and get her dictionary, or maybe from Oxford or better still get Webstar own and cram all the vocabs in them just to review an album, and confuse your stupid brain, we don’t care. You are simply stupid. When they were struggling to make it, why disn’t go to review their struggle then? Now they have made it, you want them to get traffic to your blog, while you write and hate on their efforts. In fact let me review this your blog, it’s totally below 1/5, a blog without a toolbar, nothing is arranged on it. Searching for a material is like a war, just a common Naija blog. Nothing special, idiots running blogs.

    • guy is glarling dah u re a wizkids fan…..buh guy no just bring wizkid album near chairman ooooo……d no b mate…….wizkids songs all sounds d same..
      wif different beat…….M.I…na rap philsopher….hes got d humor n lyrics punchlines flows…..for all dos haters sayin dah dis is not a rap album…abeg hw rap album dey b????? until u hear “yo yo nigga”na wen u no say na rap album???….
      ..any way d best rap NGNG………phyno fearless rapper wif d big crown….

  31. Phyno for me got best album, followed by psquare,mi,asa…have not listened to brymo tabula rasa..later I go know which is the best album… Bk to topic…they were some certain tracks&features that shouldn’t have made the album.. that track with ola,ice prince track&so many more…I give it 3/5…only phynos NGNG will I give 5/5give

  32. Fair rating to be honest. Too many features and it doesn’t really sound like a rap album.

  33. What d f*ck,you write all this nice things abt the album nd u give it 2.5/5 !!!,for me this is d only album in nigeria to get a 4/5,I have seen 3.5 giving to some let’s “manage album”,so u guys better review well.

  34. You guys just talkin abt “Chairman” being the best rap album. . .do y’all know wat rap is???. . .listen to Jesse Jagz Royal Niger Company,datz the best rap album to come out of dis country.. . to tell d truth,MI fall my hands. . dis album is pure shit,haba.Can u call dis rap,he’s following Ice Prince’s lane ba??. . After he kept uz waitin for 4 years. . JAGZ is still the Chairman

    • Thank you

  35. Jim Donnett

    Let’s call this the eastern tribute. It’s obvious what they’re known for… spending money foolishly!

  36. No jesse jags???…c’mon

  37. Abeg make una hush.. All this peeps calling It the best album of the year.. Una they talk beta trash.. The best Rap album this year is Phyno’s NGNG.. M.I shuld try harda..u guys saying psquare.. How many albums now they bring out the best.. This is just M.I’s 3rd and it is like this

  38. This is one of the best albums this yr…wheel barrow,rich,bad bell be mine among my my favourites..infact it’s my 3rd best album

  39. Best album in music History, every genre of music is here, thumbs up M.I. You just made my year. Best album in 2014 M.I (chairman) brymo (tabula rasa) ASA (bed of stones) wizkid and olamide just dey make noise with microphone. Listen to this 3 albums I listed out. That’s what I call music. My rating 5/5

  40. Tooxclusive reviews are always okay but this particular one is fcuked! Giving it a 2.5? What dafuq you thinking? This is one of the best 3 albums in the last 4 years. Only the production should be a 2.5, not to mention the features and composure. Truth be told i think this critic is looking to gain ground/prominence as a top critic by blasting top music work. Clearly you not in your right mind, i think you on some ‘shepke and roro’ things to have rated this album anything below 4.2. If you gonna do a review, do it right or else calm the fcuk down and don’t attempt to.

  41. Jim Donnet has been a cool analyser of albums, forget the fact we hype Emcees these days when they sing nothing. After 4 years outta music, Chairman is yet to satisfy my thirst. I expected more. 2.5 was a bit strict but 3.0 is my rating for the album. Worst of it all , there was no Jesse Jaga Abaga.

    • Guys let us face the facts and reality,d album is d worse compared to his many artistes he featured made the tracks bang beta dan him. Another fact I know is dat if his brother Jesse Jags contributed in this Album vocal and production wise,this album go go beta. Jesse is a good booster to any rap artiste ask Ice prince,M i,Modenine. I rate d Album 4/5. Me sef i be humanbeing ooo

  42. How can u guys rate diz album 2/5 u guyz must be out of ur mind..this is d best rap album hav ever heard mehn.,u guys re learners abeg.

    • U must b stupid or straight up ignorant…best rap album my foot. Does dis album sound lk rap stuff ni…mtcheew

  43. Boss @reviewer, get ur facts straight, igbo’s aren’t wastleful. Anyone in this country knows dat. Unless maybe u’re from libya. Then I cud pardon u for such a shitty statement, And 2.5 for the chairman, jeez that’s poor. Its by far 1 of the best albums this year.

  44. Tx you guys are foooooooooooools 4 rating dx album 2/5…this ablum shud b rated 4/5

  45. How can u rate an album with 26 features 5/5. Una no even happy say dem give am 2.5. For me, its 0.5. Timaya has d best album dis year; take it or leave it.

    • Ode!

    • Timaya. is that you?

  46. 4/5.

  47. @ jim donnet permit me to insult u by saying u are stupid….u d form open minded idiot abi?…well in my opinion let me review ur review…u try to sound polite while blaabing bullzzzhhhit…well no one cares about that u made ur point wt ur scared azz giving a 2.5 (y not a 2 ?)like its good enough…ur review was wack …heard? No backups as to what u rated d albumm on…u just had a 4cked up day ,got on d net n began telling stories bout an album ur girlfriend doesn’t like…no one wants reviews…we all have got ears. Stop waisting data. Capiche.?

    • Lol

  48. 4.5 is d least i kan take 4 dis album..its a message#chairman

  49. Jim donnett please die and do the whole world a favour, name 2 albums badder than Chairman this year….yeah i thought so..

  50. M.I was awesome 4.5/5 tanx for being yhu, for being diffrent… gon evaly be a model in the industry “Human being” “the chairman”. “Enemies” breath taking pieces ….love yhu M.I no homo

  51. Just okay album for someone with M.I standards…NGNG is the best album of the year,no contest… phyno killed it…looking forward to two kings come 2015…cant wait…

    • No be lie ooo.Phyno is truly d man of d year wen it coms to Rap album. Buh listening to M I’s Chairman on daily basis,its gat indepth meaning to unravel….Buh generally,d best Album of da year is P square’s DOUBLE TROUBLE

  52. I haven’t listened to the album, but can sum1 tell me, was M.I. scared to do a song alone? at least 1 or 2 alone tracks wouldn’t have hurt. 2ndly, we have Dj jimmy jatt & P-squares album. 3rdly, pls in all fairness, M.I. should have at least featured a minimum of 2 international acts (Rick Ross, Wayne, kanye, T. I., snoop, anyone). and finally, I expected sumtin with Don Jazzy… pls don’t chew of my head…

    • Y feature International acts whn u have local talents tht can do same or evn bettr…

  53. I close eye rate am 3/5

  54. Kulng

  55. 5/5 mi greatest ever heaters de can hate forever!

  56. nah!!, your rate is bs! the album is 4/5 if we being honest!

    • u re obviously an MI hater…well like he said “u self u b human being o”..why u no say 1/2? mtsheeeww

  57. ALBUM OF THE YEARRRR!!!! d only album where i play the intro nd jam it like a hit track!!! no body does it better!!! MI, TRUE CHAIRMAN!!!

  58. The best album this year

  59. Watt do u actually judge with? Wat criteria do u judge with. Pls be more professional abeg

  60. 4.5/5 Best album in 2014…#Rich and #Bullionvan best tracks on d album

    • When Sean tizzles journey album is dere…its Dtunes again oo

  61. Album of the year CHAIRMANs ALBUM is d best
    God bless the 3 Nigga that made this tract 9

  62. Straight up, this album shud b straight up fucked wt one leg in d air…#WTF how can MI of all pple let SA rappers kip on outshining us. Not even a killer hip hop hit track(unh!)…king James wasn’t evn included, at least dat sounded lk hip hop. Tooxclusive 2.5/5 album rating is right, buh d person writing the review sef no get anything to yan…kpa kpa kpa I dust my hand

  63. Dis reviewer drink or something!!! Dis so far d best album of d year!!!!!! Chairman is word, he stll d best rapper in d game

  64. This album is rubbish, 2.5 rating is way too much for this nonsense, M.I. Is now commercial, shame. Jagz is the greatest

  65. Guess what..MI’S new album is about to burn out the home theater lens..every song catches a different should not be monotonous and mr incredible just showed me why I can put my hands in my pocket and buy an album”made in Nigeria”..That track titled “brother” what we all need..God bless mi abaga

  66. hu ar those saying dat this is d best album?wher do u put phyno’s ngng and yung6ix 6 o’clock?i’m ratin d album 3/5

  67. M.i I jus bought the chairman album. What I found out this that u dude M.i is moving with time,thumbs up.
    Good job

  68. I cnt stop listening.. M.I is truly Africa’s best, but i expected something more different from billionaire champagne. All in all this is tha best album released this yr

  69. if brymo’s album is a 4.5/5..den MI’s should be 5/5

  70. this album is a MASTERPIECE period!!
    mr TX, you think there are question marks on his sole abilities?…think again, refer to his prev works…the guy is waaaay smart, he brought in the right pple for this, a new edge, he brought style and finesse.
    Obviously the best album i have heard in a long while..

  71. u c… these were d kind of things he wz talking bout when he sed some of these comments nearly broke his heart… there’s something 4 everyone in this album n as far as m concerned, no Nigerian musician hz gotten this aspect as well as he hz… great work from d chairman

  72. #TalkAboutIt is still his best album till date…..#TheChairman album’s rating should be 3.5 at most…..I was xpectin international features…buh no long yarning

  73. 2.5? Really?? I don’t understand Nigerian hip hip critics, u hail people like olamide but turn a blind eye on The greatest. That album is celebrated by almost every African hip hop lover. Africa respect MI while his own people keep hating

  74. I love track 16,17 so much….
    jah bless #shortblackboy @djreemark

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