Ngoan’a Nts’oanaPersonal preference aside, this is a well-thought out, near-perfect offering froman emcee who has been on and off the Lesotho hip-hop radar since the early2000s when, as part of Anonica - the three-man offshoot from then four-manoutfit Hipnotica – Thulo Monyake (alias T-Mech) got his first taste of wide-scaleairplay. This was through a competition which had been organised by a radiostation that, at that time at least, tried its darndest to support that dreadedword,
'.Fast forward to 2010. The World Cup is upon us, South Afrika has tightened itsborders with our dear beloved country, and T-Mech is sure as hell not slowingdown for any man. No, not since deciding to take up sound engineering as aprofession and also figuring out that experience and dedication does actuallybring one the results they desire. With a host of prior releases, all of which werebogged down by inaudible vocals (a feat which can be comfortably attributed toa bad choice in recording equipment), it seems Mech has learnt way more than athing or two. In fact, as evidenced on the mixtape, he has learnt thirteen tricks tokeep one entertained from beginning to end. Thirteen is used loosely as a reference to the number of songs on the mixtape.Featured artists abound, and Mech does not seem too intent on taking up all theproduction duties upon himself either. Occasionally, he lets others paintsoundscapes which complement his witty flows and overly-addictive melodies. Itis the latter that makes this an even more memorable listen. On the
', T-Mech talks of the all too familiar tale of a relationship gonebad with lines such as '
at that point in time I'd have told them to lay off me/ but that all changed the day you decided to play me
'. The sombre mood of '
' is carried forth on '
', a song abound withreflective undertones concerning the craft we all love so much, hip-hop. Heenlists the help of a relatively unknown - yet effective -
, along with
, whose presence on the Lesotho hip-hop sphere has beenminimal at best. T-Mech (
aka Count Mech-ula, aka 2lo
) is as much at home with soothingmelodies as he is with energy-fuelled beats. Album opener '
', produced by
, sees him bringing wordplay onto the table, relentlessly exploring allthe facets, angles, and fringes until he literally exhausts all references which canpossibly be made to his name in a three-minute song. Basically, he is '
too low toget under/ too big to too much/ too large to fit in your two hands, so hold up
', a song which was originally done by
, hasMech's signature flow on it, resulting in a fan-fare of party-boy lyricism.Conundrum and Mech collaborate again on '
Ba re ke mang
', a tune which fitsvery well for a mellow Sunday evening as much as it does on the deejay's playlistas a Saturday night party-starter. The ever-so-thoughtful and entertaining