The More The Better

The More The Better

Throughout the 2010s, Tekno cemented an unforgettable legacy in Afrobeats history with a string of crossover hits. His style of creating dance-ready tunes and earwormy tracks stood him out as a mastermind among his Afrobeats fellows. Combined with that rare ability to write and produce—evident by how he lent his skill and pen to records by Drake, Ciara, and Davido—he established himself as an all-round sonic polymath. Although that impressive power hit a block when he had a vocal ailment, he gave a glimpse of his talents on his debut LP, 2020’s Old Romance. But Tekno’s range and prowess surge to full capacity here on 2023’s The More the Better. “After I lost my voice, it’s just not been enough music [for] my fans,” Tekno tells Apple Music. “Everyone felt I wasn’t serious with the slow pace I was releasing music. Right now, I’m in a space where I’m releasing as much music as possible—that’s where the [album] title comes from.” A creative freedom spreads over The More the Better, unpacking a rich-in-form Tekno whose buttery-smooth vocals find the sweetest pockets of beats. The mood of the album is triumvirate, featuring Tekno’s vivid introspection, the presence of heady dance-floor tunes, and his usual contagious takes on romance—all delivered in pidgin English. “For me, this album is passing loads of messages to people because of the timeframe in which we live in,” the artist born Augustine Miles Kelechi Okechukwu explains. “Everyone just wants to move at a fast pace. No patience, no relaxation. Just allow yourself to relax and enjoy life.” Read on as Tekno walks us through the album, track by track. “Twice Shy” “When I said, ‘Just let your mind dey,’ I’m telling the average Nigerian to relax and understand that what we think about affects the outcome in life and how we see ourselves. You notice that when you’re doing something, and you’re anxious and angry, or nervous, you’re not the best version of yourself, but when you’re now calm, and you’re still engaged doing the same thing, it just happens naturally. For everyone who is in a particular position, understand that it’s not worrying that fixes it. It’s relaxation and just knowing that this one, too, shall pass.” “The More the Better” “For me, music is always about the beauty of the song, the melody of the song. This record explains the mood of the album. I’m telling people to stay in that positive energy, that positive vibe. I have a flair for melodies, and I spend a lot of time making sure melodies are perfect. So, this record was like that—making sure it encapsulates the concept of the album, which is satisfying the hunger of my fans. Making sure the pace at which I drop records is doubled.” “Flashing Lights” “Like I said in [the 2016 track ‘Pana’], love is a beautiful thing. With ‘Flashing Lights,’ if you listen where I said, ‘Flashing lights you inna the center eh’—love is at the center of everything. You know when a light bulb shines, it’s difficult to look at the center. That’s the true definition of the light shining. If she is the center, then it means she brings me peace. That’s still another way of saying, ‘If I’m able to just focus on the source and just stay right there in the middle, this is all I want. This is the best version of this love that I can find.’” “Peppermint” “‘Peppermint’ is all about gbedu [the beat]. The producer, Egarboi, told me he had a beat he specially created for me. He played me this sample, and I liked it instantly. He sent it right away, and then we developed it from there.” “King of Pop” “First thing to start with, it’s a makossa song. I don’t think you’ve heard me make this kind of music before. It’s not like I haven’t made dance records, but this is like makossa. Also, I love Michael Jackson, who’s the original King of Pop. I just wanted to create a song I’d dance so much to, and if there’s one person that would also dance like it matters so much, it is Michael Jackson.” “Peace of Mind” “Peace of mind, to me, is too important. It’s underrated. No one talks about it. Everyone talks about, ‘I want to make money. I want to make it in life.’ Meanwhile, when they head back to their house at night, the matters of mind trouble them. The voice in their head toys with them. People crave for cars, people crave the best out of life, but we often forget there’s a process towards achieving that goal. You’re never going to know peace of mind because you’re just overshadowed and drowned with the thought of, ‘I want this, I want that,’—not realizing that he who has peace, he who can control the voice in the head, has already won in life.” “Lokation” “I wanted a Yoruba record on my album, and this one had the most Yoruba, and the intonation of Yoruba. I worked on this with [singer-songwriter] Ayox. I don’t speak Yoruba, so we would sing a melody or two, and I’d ask, ‘How do you say this in Yoruba?’ Ayox is such a great artist, and he doesn’t just translate [the language]—he’s able to translate the melodies in a way that makes the song so great.” “Pocket” “I made this with Insane Chips. It’s a party song, but I also feel it’s a mindset. When I say, ‘When money dey pocket,’ a lot of people think it has to be in the range of $2 million before they can enjoy. No, it can just be that 1000 naira note, and you’re soft and good to go.” “Permit” “Egarboi produced the song. It was one of the beats he sent that had me stunned immediately. It’s a beautiful love song. For those that love a regular Tekno love song, this is for them.” “Borrow” “During the time we were creating for the album, I was always happy. And naturally, I’m a happy person. If I’m not happy, something has happened, and if I’m not happy, I stay away from everybody, so I don’t rub off that stench on anybody. So, when we created ‘Borrow,’ produced again by Egarboi, I was in that happy mood. I think it’s one of those songs that I fell in love with the beat, and then we went ahead and just created a beautiful song to it. It’s a song I know my female fans would definitely love.” “Regina” (feat. CKay) “This song connected CKay and I really beautifully. The transition from my voice into his voice and his voice back into my voice—I really like it. I always just thought CKay is not an emotional artist, but his music has loads of emotion. ‘Regina’ is just soaked in emotions.” “Play” “The whole message that I preached for the whole album, it’s at the ending that I still made it obvious. [It’s about] never losing the child in you, because that child in you has no fears. When we were kids, we had the wildest dreams, the wildest ideas, wildest fun. That zone is where I’m trying to get people to relax and just enjoy, because no one is as carefree and playful as kids. It’s a zone where there’s no overthinking, and we’re not overwhelmed. I had already finished recording, I had already submitted, and then I was with Krizbeatz in the studio, and as soon as I heard the beat in my head, I knew what to say.” “Can’t Chase” “[This is the] oldest song on the album. For me, I don’t like when a woman runs her mouth. That’s why I said, ‘E get some kind of things that I can’t take, ’cause I know they do am to anybody.’ You won’t find me shouting on anybody, arguing, or nagging—so why are you going to do it to me then? Women sometimes have a preference for trouble, so right there, the song provided an avenue for me to unpack my thoughts on relationships.”

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