Sjava releases new album, Isibuko

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  • Sjava has released a brand-new album, Isibuko.
  • The 18-track studio album, released on Friday, exposes "a deeply introspective side" of the musician.
  • Speaking about Isibuko, he said it is a reflection of his journey over the past few years and speaks to his experiences and growth as a person and musician.

Five years since the release of his last studio album, multi-award-winning musician Sjava, real name Jabulani Hadebe, is back with a new body of work.

His brand-new album, Isibuko (a mirror), was released on Friday. The 18-track album exposes "a deeply introspective side" of the musician. 

Speaking about the album, in a press statement, Sjava said: "This album is a reflection of my journey over the last few years and speaks to my experiences and growth as a person and as a musician. Musically it is a continuation of the process that began with the Umsebenzi EP/Deluxe, and I hope my supporters enjoy the body of work".

The EP was released in 2020, and its deluxe version was released in 2021.

"I know it's been a while, but I trust that the album will be worth the wait. Thank you to everyone who has supported me over the last eight years of my career, and I look forward to continuing this musical journey together in the future."

According to the statement, the album's foundations were laid during a two-week album retreat in northern KwaZulu-Natal. During the retreat, Sjava, his long-term producer and partner Ruff, Delayde, Webmoms and Vuyo Manyike conceptualised the essence of the project and recorded the initial music and album vocals.

Featured in the album are Emtee, Saudi, 1020 Cartel's Anzo and maskanda heavyweights Shwi, Mzukulu and Dumakahle.

On the album, Amayaka describes how self-doubt and fear lead to self-sabotage and reminds listeners that they are often further in their lives than the tiny voice of doubt in their heads would have them believe. At the same time, Thixo is a haunting prayer and plea to God to remain within His sight and grace.

Akabuye and Kube Ngangazi describe family relationships and hardships vividly.

Staying true to form with sad love songs, which Sjava is well known for, are Amanxeba, which tells the tale of the never-ending time it takes to heal from the grief of a failed relationship, and Grounding, which describes a man's longing to finally find true love, settle down and start a family.

However, Dudlu and Iphisi paint beautiful pictures of enduring love.

My Life and Isoka are the upbeat tracks which round the album off along with Ungavumi and Ubuhle bendalo, which share positive, feel-good messages.

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