Sarkology for different moods - An album review

BY: Jacob Roberts-Mensah / Ameyaw Debrah


Sarkodie has asserted himself again. Much like Rapperholic, Sarkology was crafted by a number of name producers (Magnum, Hammer, Killbeatz and more), and this album also serves a showcase for Sarkodie’s signature rapid-fire rhymes and memorable lines.

Sarkodie shows that he is very aware of his prominence in GH Rap and GH music history as a whole throughout the album in songs like Preach and Y’all already Know. His delivery has gotten better with each album and with his multiple pop culture references it is evident  that he is still a student of the game.

He does very well on this album to further blur the lines between GH Rap/Hip-life and Hip-hop not necessarily being boxed in or defined by either genre and managing to dip in and out of each one whenever he wants to. Sarkodie also continues to show that his speed and ability to “twist” isn’t just a gimmick but just one of his many abilities as an MC.

Great music bring together dope beats and good lyrics and often times many MCs struggle with this. Sometimes, they either go too hard in one area and compromise in another but Sarkology succeeds in bringing both together.

Sarkology  should’ve been called Rapperholic II in my opinion. It follows pretty much the same formula as Rapperholic. With no overall theme for the whole project, the same topics of overcoming haters, winning a Grammy, faith (Halleluyah, War) and being the best MC are all addressed throughout Sarkology, as much as they were on Rapperholic. We actually learn even more about his ego throughout the record, and it takes only 39 seconds for Sarkodie to mention material possessions in this album ahead of hip hop artistes such as Kanye West and even Jay-z of Yeezus and MCHG respectively.

Sarkodie’s use of foul language has also increased substantially on this album and although I do respect that he’s a grown man and can do/say whatever he wants, I genuinely winced a bit at every F-word uttered. But this is hip-hop right?

Similar to Rapperholic, this album is feature-heavy but he wasn’t out-shone  by any of his featured artistes and quite frankly on a few records, I would much rather have heard him alone.

One disappointment on Sarkology was XXL.  After creating two incredible tracks such as Old School Love and Give It to Me on Rapperholic, I had really high expectations from the pair on this album. Also coming after tough record like Original, on the album, XXL ended up  sounding like a less impactful sequel to that song. I could have also done without  Marry Me (although Sian is an incredible singer) and Gunshot.

Gunshot sounded way too easy. Two big musicians, top producer, a good-enough beat, and a very simple catchy chorus, this collaboration sounded much better in theory. Pon D Ting (ft Banky W) was one of the better collaborations on Sarkology with both artistes equally sounding like they were excited to be on the track.

I grew to appreciate Ordinary Love with Tiwa Savage once I decided to look past how bad the line “rolling like a rolling stone” was. Where Down on One with Fuse ODG goes without saying, 2 Paddies (ft Joey B) was another great collaboration. Joey B brought his signature sense of humour and style and the duo provided a very entertaining and skillful record.

I appreciated Sarkodie’s ability to own every beat he is on, and depending on how hard the beat is his flow and lyricism varies to match. This can be heard on stand out records such as Dear Rap Original, Rap Attack and Elijah. Additionally, on Sizeless (skit), Sarkodie is at his absolute best when he enters into full, rappity-rap mode and showing off his skill and technical ability as an MC.

However, while I hugely appreciate the rap bravado it is great to hear Sarkodie embrace his duty as a role model and give us songs like Halleluyah (ft Vivian Chidid) and Small Small (ft. Lil Shaker). Can I just say that both Magnum and Lil Shaker did some incredible work on the tracks they produced on Sarkology.

Sarkology has music for different moods, and tracks for the barbershop, club,(as Sarkodie mentions himself ) the car and even the gym. The diversity of Sarkodie’s flow, and his ability to rap over just about anything carries the listener through the album very easily. He even provides love songs from every angle; playing the role of guy begging for his girl to stay (Hold On), guy who gets cheated on (Lies),  guy in a long distance relationship (Whatever You Do) and even guy proposing to his girl (Marry Me).

In the future it would be good to see Sarkodie blur the lines between his real life and the music even more. If the title is anything to go by, Sarkology literally should’ve been the Study of Sarkodie but we find out less about him as a person or where he is now in his personal life compared to how much we learn about his come-up and struggle on previous projects.

With another album under his belt, Sarkodie is one of the only Ghanaians MCs that people can actually go and see in concert without any supporting acts besides an opening act. Honestly, it is difficult for anyone to hate on him, he is now three albums in and he clearly has many more albums and so much more great music in him.

One thing no one can deny is Sarkodie’s work ethic, this guy just gave us thirty songs….THIRTY! And has already shot seven music videos. Sarkodie continues to show us that he is at the top of the game and is the undisputed leader of the new school in this Golden Era of GH Music.