[EP Review] Mavin Records’ latest talent Ayra Starr blesses us with her self-titled debut EP

18-Year-Old singer-songwriter Ayra Starr introduces herself to the world with a huge bang, courtesy of her latest self-titled debut EP!

Ayra is the latest signing to Mavin Records, Africa’s leading record label! The label which is founded by Don Jazzy is infamous for the careers of superstars Tiwa Savage, Rema and D’Banj. Ayra, who was born in Benin and grew up between Cotonou and Lagos demonstrates how the mix of cultures influences her own unique sound through her powerful vocals.

The EP’s lead single and opening track ‘Away’ is a mid-tempo and rhythmic number re-defining the standard break-up song. The power that exudes from her voice is translated into the lyrics and content of this song. Ayra is able to direct her pain and anguish into feelings of strength, power and resilience.

Speaking on the track, Ayra said: “I freestyled half of ‘Away’ at a time I was feeling down. It was like therapy. Singing the song out loud was like freeing myself from my burden. ‘Away’ is not just a heartbreak song, it’s a song that empowers you to stand up to that thing or person that is causing you sadness”.

The accompanying visuals bring the song’s story to life and we see how Ayra channels her inner female warrior with such slick choreography.

The sassiness and strength are then carried onto the second song on the EP “Ija” which is Yoruba for fight. Throughout the song, Ayra is able to fuse her Yoruba vocals accompanied with a very upbeat production while she encourages us to dance. The Yoruba is also carried onto her song ‘DITR’ which for me is one of my favourites from the project. The song provides a stripped back feel that focuses mostly on Ayra’s vocals. ‘Sare’ with the backing vocals sounding like a choir reminds me of South African music again showcasing Ayra’s versatility. It’s great to hear so many different angles of Ayra’s talent in only a few songs. It makes you think how far she can really go with more time and with more songs. The EP then closes off with the slower and mellow song ‘Memories”, the perfect wind-down to a vibrant project as she reminds us that “memories don’t die”.

You couldn’t really have asked for much more for a debut EP. This EP provides a strong and memorable introduction for Ayra to the world. It’s clear from this tape, that she has a hugely bright future ahead of her. With her powerful vocals, Mavin Records behind her and such an impressive list of label mates by her side, it’s only a matter of time before she becomes a global star! (No PUN intended!!)

The EP is one of those projects that every time you listen, you might find a new favourite. It would be a 4.5/5 for me and the standout tracks would have to be “Away” and “DITR”. I really couldn’t pick one!

Stream the EP here: https://lnk.to/ayra-starr 

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