Kenyan Crooner Xenia Manasseh Delivers ‘Love/Hate Pt. 1’
Alternative R&B Kenyan singer-songwriter, Xenia Manasseh takes listeners on a rollercoaster of love’s uncertainty with her eagerly-awaited debut album ‘Love/Hate Pt. 1’- out now. The 11-track masterpiece is delicate, fierce and woven with raw and vulnerable lyrics that begs to be heard from top to bottom.
Xenia Manasseh’s poignant debut album takes listeners on a captivating journey through the tumultuous rollercoaster of love while artfully weaving together soulful melodies, introspective lyrics, and relatable dilemmas that resonate with every heart. The stripped-down visualizer for track “Love/Hate” unveils Xenia’s real truth. It drips with sorrow, hope, and with an eclectic energy that captures the listener at every turn. Taking the viewer through acres of greenery, the R&B sensation glazes off into a brighter future. The single touches on the necessity of letting go and looking forward to a bright future.
Xenia speaks on the album and the newly released visualizer, “Love/Hate is also one of the songs and I felt that was the song that encompassed all the feelings that are spoken about in the album–the good, the bad, and in-between. I try to remember that balance as [a lifeline]. I’m also a Libra which is the sign of the scale, so I try to see the world through that lens and I felt like it’s not just representative of the album but also of me,” adding, “I feel like everything in the album falls under those two words. It’s like a pendulum swing – you’re in and you’re out. When people listen, the title will resonate with them.”
1. GI’s Intro feat. Edgar Manasseh
2. Soul Lovers
3. Late Night Check Up feat. Shalom Dubas
4. Southwards feat. Tay Iwar
5. Anticipate feat. Karun
6. Temporary Love
7. Cheza Chini Interlude
11. Love / Hate
The album opens with “GI’s Intro” , a soft, soulful Swahili song Intro that features Xenia’s grandfather Manasseh. They harmonize and bond over a Swahili composition by Luka Tututu from the Coast Province, where Xenia’s family comes from, a prelude that sets the tone for the emotional rollercoaster that follows. “Soul Lovers” then kicks in, capturing Xenia’s yearning for a renewed and balanced love, a sentiment that many can relate to.
As the album progresses, Xenia takes us on a deep dive into the many facets of love. “Late Night Check Up” featuring American-Nigerian rapper Shalom Dubas explores late-night introspections, while “Southwards” with Tay Iwar delves into daydreaming about someone who may not be the right fit for her. “Anticipate” showcases Xenia’s vulnerability, with the haunting vocals of Karun echoing her worries about the longevity of a romantic relationship. However, in “Temporary Love,” she finds the courage to express her true desires and overcomes anxieties that might have held her back.
In the interlude “Cheza Chini” Xenia is asking her partner to safeguard their love in the privacy of their connection, echoing her desire to protect what they have. In “Lowkey,” Xenia explores the notion of keeping love under wraps, leading to heartfelt conversations about the need to preserve the intimacy and sanctity of relationships. The captivating journey continues with “Niambie,” where Xenia flawlessly leads us through the complexities of feeling wanted in a relationship and the necessity of assurance asking her partner to proclaim their love in Swahili; “Niambie ni mimi” (Tell me I am the one)
“Precious” takes us on a journey of self-discovery, as Xenia realizes her self-worth within the relationship. She sets her boundaries and shows us how self-love can be the foundation for all forms of love. And finally, “Love-Hate” concludes the album. The album serves as an incredible introduction to Xenia Manasseh’s artistry, leaving listeners eagerly anticipating what comes next in her musical journey. With “Love-Hate Pt 1,” Xenia Manasseh delivers an album that captures the essence of love’s highs and lows, inviting listeners to resonate with the emotions and experiences shared through her soulful music.
Xenia continues to make waves as an artist who blends stunning lyrical relatability with lush vocals and intricate songwriting. Her music is relatable and honest and a reflection of her life, values and experiences. She is renowned for bringing a refreshing new sound to the music scene following the success of her 2019 debut EP Fallin’ Apart. She has captivated a varied audience with the clarity and the purity of her tone and successful collaborations like Maybe 2022 EP with Kenyan producer/artist Ukweli.
ABOUT XENIA MANASSEH
Xenia Manasseh is a 26-year old artist and performer raised in Kenya and the US. Her multi-cultural background and study at Berklee College of Music led to her establish a strong brand in LA where she’s an esteemed songwriter, having accrued songwriting credits on Teyana Taylor’s ‘The Album’ for the songs: “Wrong B*tch” (in which she also did background vocals) and “Shoot It Up” feat. Big Sean.
Xenia’s other key collaborations and features include with Mr Eazi on “Cherry”, Tay Iwar on “Stones”, Sauti Sol on “Rhumba Japani”; as well as doing background vocals for Sauti Sol’s album ‘Midnight Train’ and on “Time Flies” Sauti Sol collaboration with Burna Boy – off the Grammy-winning album ‘Twice As Tall’. Among notable stages, Xenia has performed at Blankets and Wine Festival Kenya (2023) and at the virtual Essence Festival (2020).
In 2023, Xenia was named by Apple Music among Africa’s ‘Ones To Watch’. Her 2022 Maybe EP was featured by Apple Music as ‘Release Of The Month’. Spotify also added Xenia on their global EQUAL and RADAR ambassador programs, which had her spotlighted on various playlists and on billboards worldwide.
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