Label: Black Focus
Released: September 28

Having impressed as one of the instrumentalists on Yussef Kamaal’s 2016 album, Black Focus, 2018 was the year we received South London-based guitarist Mansur Brown’s debut LP, Shiroi. Signed by Wu as he’d ‘never heard anything like it before’, it’s impossible not to be moved by the eleven tracks of Brown’s masterly riffs (on release in September he drew comparisons to Jimi Hendrix; check out “God Willing” for evidence). And while ultimately this is a jazz album, woven together by the electric guitar—highlights including “Mashita”, “Me Up” and “Motions”—tracks such as “Back South” could be headed for a Dr. Dre studio session, while “Flip Up” is a lesson in both tracing trip-hop and trying to fathom the skill level necessary for such musicianship. When performed live, Brown is able to capture (and hold) the attention of a thousand strong crowd from the first note, and you can’t help but feel you’ve witnessed a true great being born with Shiroi. —Chantelle Fiddy