Unpacking De Lukes’ latest album “Zuva”

Mthabisi Tshuma ,[email protected]

NGOMA Ingoma lead singer Luke “De Lukes” Kamanga has released a scorching album that defines his mature talent and versatility.

The Zuva album has tracks, Norudo, Dzoka Kumba, Vuboom, IThemba, Zuva, Ndinokuda, Paribe and Beautiful Love.

Zuva is available on Spotify after being released last month. It is rich in indigenous musical soundscapes spanning various genres such as jazz, afro jazz, and mbira music.

De Lukes’ lyrics, and the pictures he paints sit well on the luscious production that is the backrock of the album.

The album opens with Willis Wataffi and Chiweddar’s opening track “Norudo” an ode to love and the need for healthy loving relationships in society. It is followed up by Dzoka Kumba, a song that opens up with a mbira chord progression and a strong lead guitar reminiscent of yesteryear musical legends such as Andy Brown.

Dzoka Kumba translated from the Shona language meaning “come back home” is a cry out for a long-lost sibling who left home a long time ago and has not returned. This is a relatable story with many Zimbabweans having to leave their homes in search of greener pastures in neighbouring countries.

Vuboom, the third song featuring award-winning songstress Mimmie Tarukwana serves as a love song and seeks to describe the sensations that love brings out in both the man and woman during their love affair. The vocal performance of both singers shines well on this song.

“IThemba” which comes in as track number four is a motivational song for everyone going through a tough time and is on the brink of giving up. De Lukes is assisted by legendary Zimbabwean music ambassador, Vusa Mkhaya, who has been raising the country’s flag high on the international stages. The organic synergy between both artistes is felt in this song as the Ndebele sung lyrics compliment the smooth jazz production backing the song.

Zuva, the title track comes in as track number five and tells a sad story of a child being held accountable by their parents for their laziness and unwillingness to take initiative. “Zuva” means the sun in Shona and the lyrics directly translate to “The sun has set and my child you haven’t achieved anything”. De Lukes and his backing vocalists complement each other so well on the song, adding an extra layer of texture to the amazing Afro-jazz production the story is painted on.
“Ndinokuda” follows up as track number six and it opens up with strong brass chords and is a love song, reminding and assuring a lover of how much they are loved and De Lukes gets to reminisce over how their love story started. The chorus is very catchy and is sure to leave everyone on the dancefloor in a celebration of love.

“Paribe” follows as track number seven and serves to give positive affirmations of resilience and perseverance to people trying their best to change their situation.

The album closes off with “Beautiful Love” an ode to all lovers and a celebration of healthy relationships. The lyrics serve to express his affection for his partner and inspire many other couples and partners out there to be in loving and caring relationships.

De Lukes said the album speaks true of the experiences of Zimbabweans.
“Zuva is an album filled with mature subject matter and themes that resonate with Zimbabweans and Africans from all walks of life. It’ll undoubtedly serve as the soundtrack to many people’s lives,” said De Lukes. – @mthabisi_mthire

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