Hip-hop and rap has reached unprecedented heights across the Middle East, no more so than in Egypt. Nearly everyday now, there’s a new rapper or a producer that emerges out of the shadows. Granted, the scene is still finding its feet and the quality and originality factors fluctuate, but a new generation of rappers to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Abyusif, Wegz and Marwan Pablo can only be a good thing - they just need to be given a chance.
Lil Zuzu is one such rapper. Don’t be fooled by his youth - this is a guy with plenty of potential. In an usual but ballsy move, he has wasted no time in announcing himself to the scene, releasing a surprisingly polished nine-track album, Yadi Elneela.
Overall, the album is a fun, light listen, full of bouncy beats and catchy choruses, some of which include audio clips from famous comedy movies from the likes of Mohamed Henedy and Mohamed Saad that gives the album some Egyptian spice.
There’s an argument to be made that the tracks lack a variety, which can only showcase so much of one rapper. Lyrically, however, Zuzu shows versatility; you’ll hear plenty of pop culture quips, but also more meaningful rhymes, all delivered with a flow that belies his age.