New Track: City of Dreams – Tobi Sunmola

Having brought the heat with previous singles ‘Simba’ and ‘Wild Wild East’ Mancunian wordsmith TOBI SUNMOLA released the title track off his forthcoming EP ‘City Of Dreams’

Inspired by the film ‘Inception’, ‘City Of Dreams’ is a display of Tobi’s admiration and pride for his adopted city following the tragic events earlier in the year. Although the emotional track was written before the 02 bombing, Sunmola maintains that the meaning behind the lyrics only made sense after, as he yearns, “don’t believe what you read in the news baby, the city’s alive”.

Growing up in Nigeria, Tobi recalls saving up lunch money daily to skip school and head to the studio with his rap crew Dope Kommunity. Moving to Manchester aged 16 the young poet instantly immersed himself in the UK hip hop scene recording in local youth club studios. Showing signs of a promising career early on, the aspiring talent has been advocated by the likes of  and BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra.

Captivating, and honest, Sunmola is able to connect with his audience through an inspired sincerity rarely seen amongst rappers so young…here’s your chance to check out his work; listen to ‘City of Dreams.’

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Song of the Day: Wild Wild West – Tobi Sunmola

Tipped as Mobo’s ‘One to Watch’ TOBI SUNMOLA returns to centre stage with the second release ‘Wild Wild East’, from his forthcoming EP.

The self-produced single showcases this newcomer’s versatility and ability to combine clever wordplay and infectious flows, with politically driven lyricism. At times the track is reminiscent of the Joey Bada$$ album ‘All Amerikkkan Bada$$’ with the young MC drawing inspiration from his African roots and struggles that he has continued to wrestle with during life in East Manchester.

A play, on the widely known phrase – ‘Wild Wild West’ – Tobi states that, “I used this reference to explain the big bad world I have to deal with, the negativity, deceit, envy and hardship, and how I try to keep my energy high through it all, in the hope of making it back home.”

Growing up in Nigeria, Tobi recalls that “becoming an artiste wasn’t a visible reality. I made music because I really wanted to”. His determination to succeed as a musician against the odds saw Sunmola saving up lunch money daily to skip school and head to the studio with his rap crew Dope Kommunity. Moving to Manchester aged 16 the young poet instantly immersed himself in the grime and UK hip hop scene, and his dedication has seen him achieve great things at the early stages of his career. Alongside winning Adidas’ ‘Take the Stage’ competition, he performed Radio 1 Big Weekend Exeter and has been acclaimed by the likes of Complex, The Line Of Best Fit, Afropunk, DJ Booth and BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra.

Progressive and perceptive, ‘Wild Wild East’ is a further testament to TOBI SUNMOLA’s out-of-the-box approach as he continues to establish himself as one of the most exciting talents coming out of Manchester’s burgeoning underground music scene.

Song of the Day: Simba – Tobi Sunmola

Following the gripping visuals to ‘Never Forget We’re Here/Tales From The East IV’, TOBI SUNMOLA returns with ‘Simba’ – the debut release taken off his forthcoming EP.

‘Simba’ is a gritty and emotional testimony of both heartache and promise providing a compelling insight into the ethnological struggles of being an artist in today’s industry.

Tobi explains: “It talks about who I am as a person, the colour of my skin and how that may either hinder my growth to where I aspire to be.” Throughout the racial upheavals experienced, Nigerian-born Sunmola remains positive and resiliently confides in his unshakeable pursuit of greatness as he sings “through the pain, in the rain, in the night, any day…I’ll preach”. The instrumentation compliments this sentiment where melancholy chords are backboned by a bouncy hip hop beat that underlines his infectious flow and hook patterns. Authentic and unfiltered ‘Simba’ is an intriguing take on modern hip-hop that draws upon the influence of TOBI SUNMOLA’s rich African heritage.

The Manchester-based artist has achieved an admirable amount, since his humble beginnings in the studio of his local youth club. Co-producing ‘Simba’ with local rapper Two4Kay – who has previously featured on Link UP TV and The 405 – this new release is the product of a long-standing relationship that blossomed within the tight-knit Manchester music scene which forged early on in their careers. Named as Mobo’s ‘One to Watch’, this emerging talent has since been championed by Huw Stephens, DJ Booth and Mistajam whilst Complex, Afropunk and Flavour Magazine have been writing about his ‘stunning versatility’ online.

Combined with an array of adept live performances, including BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend in Exeter last year – the wondrously creative, ‘Simba’ is a perceptive and accomplished piece of work, that will cement Sunmola’s place as one of the UK’s most exciting, rising hip hop artists this year.