AUDIO: Ruger – “The Second Wave (Deluxe)” (EP)

Ruger’s six-track debut Pandemic announced his arrival on the blossoming Afropop scene—and led him to opening for Burna Boy’s 2021 UK tour. On The Second Wave, Ruger reasserts his hitmaking credentials. His ongoing partnership with veteran producer KukBeatz is once again on full display here, sticking with the formula that delivered Bounce.

On Champion, he recalls his humble beginnings as the son of a roadside food vendor and recounts a steady growth from the streets to the stage—with plenty of chest-thumping: “Tell me why you vexing/not yet started, I’m still testing/already impressing.” He makes a call romantic attention on Snapchat, a fitting title for a star who first got the attention of label boss D’Prince by way of Instagram freestyles.

The EP’s highlight and twilight is Dior, where the infectious percussive underlay becomes a neat canvas for Ruger’s distinct wordplay and self-assuredness. The Second Wave proves that despite his relatively short time in the music industry, Ruger, named for the rugged pistol, is not given to shooting blanks; the deluxe edition adds extra ammo with Girlfriend, WeWe and Warning.

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