Nippa’s [@nippa_ad] Self Titled EP Is An Ode To Classic R&B With Some Contemporary Flair

Nippa’s self titled debut EP is a reminder that there is sensational male talent in the UKs R&B scene.

Nippa might be a name you’re not too familiar with just yet but the North London artist has already captured the attention of international stars as well as the radio. Having grown up with strong R&B influences from his mum and sister’s musical collections, he’s has been immersed in music from a young age. He was freestyling his first lyrics and melodies from as young as five years old. Yet his sound has depth to it, it isn’t just R&B influenced and that’s due to the prominence of Grime in North London which played just as important a role in his musical development as R&B did. With names like Skepta, JME, and Chip being your local talent that’s no surprise and with that comes an element of bringing that more gritty Grime/Rap cadence to his sound.

Bursting onto a lot of people’s radars with his single “Situation”, Nippa has been marked out as one to watch by the likes of Complex, BBC 1Xtra and more. On top of this, his talent and drive has seen him fulfil one of his early goals of linking up with American superstar Blxst. At Blxst’s headline show in the UK last week, Nippa came to the stage as the opening act and held the crowd as if it was his show – the talent is crazy and people gravitate towards it once they see it.

Following up the momentous moment of performing alongside an international artist he holds in high regard he’s followed this up with a sublime six track self titled EP. The project features the aforementioned “Situation” as well as the previously released “Ride Or Die” alongside the four new tracks. If you were a fan of either of those you’ve got plenty more in store to enjoy. Whilst the project runtime is just under twelve minutes it still feels complete. There’s a cohesiveness as you move through the project that I can only assume was meticulously curated as the project contains real variety amongst its production and song tempo yet it all works together perfectly. No two songs on the project sound the same and although that R&B core shines through, depending on what song you’re listening to you’ll hear elements of Nippa‘s other musical influences coming to the forefront a bit more.

One thing I think really works in favour of this EP is song length – no single song clocks in at over two and a half minutes in its length. Now on the surface, you might think a shorter song wouldn’t be a good thing, we want great songs to last as long as possible right? But the flip side of having great songs that are long is that they sometimes lose their replayability after a few listens as with that longer run time things can get really repetitive after only a few listens. With the songs being so short on the Nippa EP everything feels tight and intentional with no waste at all. The brevity of the songs is going to make people want to replay tracks that they wished lasted longer, it’s an interesting phenomenon that has also worked really well for PinkPantheress.

None of that would matter however if the music wasn’t great. Every song on the EP could well and truly stand alone as a single and do well so having them all together creates an experience that feels even greater than the sum of its parts – which is saying something considering how strong each track is in isolation. The standout track to me is “Ride Or Die” with it quintessentially capturing the essence of 90s/early 00s R&B but simultaneously feeling fresh and having Nippa really showcase his ability with melodies. If his more Rap led style is your preference however I’d say “Pay The Price” and “I Know” will be more the vibe you’re going for.

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All in all, it is a sublime body of work that reestablishes the standard that we should expect of the men of UK R&B (the women have been keeping the levels extremely high). It is polished with no filler, maintains an element of fun without sacrificing substance, and above all else is an extremely easy and pleasant listen whether the first or fifteenth time listening through the project. Do not sleep on this project or Nippa, you’ll only be doing yourself a disservice by missing out.

You can stream the Nippa EP here and watch the video to “Pay The Price” below.

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