Maskal fails to impress on Umunthu launch

The Afro-pop singer, Maskal on Sunday failed to live up to the billing during a launch of his second album, Umunthu at Limbe Country Club in a show that was marred by equipment hitches.

With good weather and already build up hype-that resulted into impressive turnout-tilting in his favour, Maskal born Masiye Kasalu failed to put up impressive show, leaving the audience to find comfort in the curtain-raisers that include Black Missionaries, Blakjak, Barry One, Kapilintiya and Young K who came to his rescue.

The curtain-raisers labored to balance the mood through the poor connected and managed equipment that spoiled the zeal for good sound as they rose above the equipment hitches and put up energetic performances beyond what the audience got from the main man himself, Maskal.

This is not first time for the self-styled sing-jay to slip up in an album launch. In 2010 during the launch of his first album, Nthawi, Maskal, whose songs keep on enjoying massive radio airplays, failed to live up to expectations and was only rescued by hip-hop artist, Third Eye who gave the patronage a treat equal to its quest.

Maskal on stage launching ‘Umunthu’. Photo by Kimpho Loka/Nyasa Times

Despite a good turnout, things appeared not all well from the start as the show started three hours late from expected time without enough security to man the venue, which is not well fenced, leaving many people getting an entry without pay.

Stage Time

Backed by his newly formed band, Maskal got on stage at around 5:15pm and went straight into ditching out one of singles from Umunthu, Usatope a  Manganje beat. But with his high-pitched silk voice, the equipment did not do any justice to Maskal who spiced up the song by calling two girls to dance to Usatope hit.

The equipment hired clearly proved not good at all without a proper sound engineer.

It seemed Maskal did not realize the problem as he kept on singing on high pitch that was characterized by equipment hissing sound, not good for the ear and the backing-voices team did not give him a fair treat at all-the duo’s voices were out of range, spoiling the performed songs in the process.

That aside, he had no energy to spirit up his performance on stage despite having overwhelming ovation from his overzealous fans. Maskal performed five songs, two from old album, Nthawi. He did Udalire, Ndimakukonda as well as Umamva Bwanji, Upeze Wina and Zili Ndiwe from Umunthu album.


The selected list of curtain-raisers was well arranged as it did not disappoint at all. The curtain-raisers include Barry One, Blakjak of Wadya Iwe fame, Kapilintiya, Young K and the reggae outfit, Black Missionaries popularly known as Mablacks.

Performing under same equipment hitches, Mablacks, Blakjak, Young K and Kapilintiya-except Barry One who performed under CD- managed to put their vocals within range and their energetic performances covered up the equipment spoils and the deficit Maskal left on the frenzy audience.

Surely they deserve a credit from saving Maskal’s face with their spirited stage management and performances. During the show, Maskal managed to sell out over 150 CDs which were going out at K1,000 each. The show was sponsored by Access Communications Limited and Carlsberg Limited.

Maskal who parted ways with his former managers, Ndefeyo Entertainment is a bland ambassador for Access.

Umunthu, a ten-track album, is Maskal’s second album and contains songs like the current popular ones Usatope and Zili ndiwe as well as Umunthu, Chilengedwe and Linga Langa among others.

Zili ndiwe and Usatope has managed to balance up Maskal’s popularity, but it is yet to be seen if Umunthu will rise to the stardom and sell out like hot cakes while enjoying popularity for years just like Nthawihas done.

Some of the people who were trying to tussle with security to find their free way in. Photo by Kimpho Loka/Nyasa Times
Yesaya aka Big Y was one of the supporting acts. Photo by Kimpho Loka/Nyasa Times
Rapper BarryOne performing ‘Kapilire’ which he features Maskal. Photo by Kimpho Loka/Nyasa Times
Part of the audience enjoying Maskal’s vibes at Limbe country Club on Sunday. Photo by Kimpho Loka/Nyasa Times

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