After what might feel like forever for hardcore Sjava fans, the award-winning musician has finally released his full-length (18 track) studio album titled “Isibuko” (Translated: A mirror).

As the name suggests, the album exposes a deeply introspective side to the artist as he takes the listener on a journey of bare and raw emotions.

Sjava last released music in 2020 with the release of his EP “Umsebenzi”, which was highly successful. He released a deluxe version in 2021.

The musician shared in a statement that the new album speaks of his experiences and growth as a person.

“This album obviously 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”.

Speaking to the length of time it has taken to release another full-length studio album since “Umqhele" in 2018, Sjava said, “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 8 years of my career, and I look forward to continuing this musical journey together in the future.”

The release of the 18-track album was announced by Sjava at his ‘Live in Durban’ concert which took place in December last year.

The audience was given a sneak-peak into the project with a live performance of the song “Amavaka”, for which both Delayde and Webmoms travelled to South Africa for the performance with Sjava.

On production and instruments, Sjava worked with his long-term producer and partner Ruff and Vuyo Manyike, who has worked with Sjava since his debut album in 2016; as well as Delayde and Webmoms (UK).

Featured artists include long-time ATM collaborators Emtee and Saudi, 1020 Cartel’s Anzo, and Maskandi heavyweights Shwi, Mzukulu, Inkos’yamagcokama and Dumakahle.

Sjava has also featured some leading ladies on the project such as Afrotainment stars, the Qwabe Twins and the highly talented singer/songwriter Mzulu Phaqa.

The foundations of the album were laid at a two-week album retreat in February 2022 at Antbear Lodge in the beautiful Okhahlamba mountains in northern KZN.

It was here that Sjava, Ruff, Delayde, Webmoms and Manyike conceptualised the essence of the project, and recorded the initial music and vocals for the album.

“Amavaka”, describes how self-doubt and fear leads to self-sabotage, reminding us that we’re often further in our lives than the tiny voice of doubt in our heads would have us believe; while “Thixo” is a haunting prayer, a plea to God to remain within His sight and Grace.

Family relationships and hardships are vividly described and exquisitely delivered in “Akabuye” and “Kube ngangazi” .

Sad love songs, a genre that Sjava is well known for, are well-represented on this album.

“Amanxeba” tells the tale of the never-ending time it takes to heal from the grief of a failed relationship; and “Grounding” describes a man’s longing to finally find true love, settle down and start a family.

But the love songs are not all sad with “Dudlu” and “Iphisi” painting beautiful pictures of enduring love.

The album rounds off with strong upbeat tracks such as “My Life” and “Isoka” as well as songs with positive feel-good messages (in true Sjava fashion), like “Ungavumi” and the glorious “Ubuhle bendalo”.

“Isibuko” is available on all leading digital platforms.

2023-01-27T10:16:46Z dg43tfdfdgfd