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The Return Image

Universal acclaim - based on 9 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

  • Summary: The debut full-length studio release for the Australian rapper features guest appearances from Alien, Blue Lab Beats, Boadi, Jace XL, Krown, Lori, Mandarin Dreams, SILENTJAY, Steam Down, Sunburnt Soul Choir, Thando, Mwanje Tembo, Theresa Mutale Tembo, Whosane, and Ecca Vandal.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Uncut
    Sep 19, 2019
    Epic debut, an emotionally rich and stylistically broad mediation on homeland, exile and identity. ... A lavish feast of an album. [Nov 2019, p.30]
  2. Sep 12, 2019
    Musically, it is an often breathtaking listen as she straddles various genres with consummate ease. It serves as a dazzling celebration of her cultural and musical heritage that will resonate for years to come.
  3. Sep 12, 2019
    With 'The Return', Sampa The Great expertly dismantles the notion of genre, proving that, when it comes to art, what really matters is content, not labels.
  4. Sep 12, 2019
    Full of insight and inspiration, The Return is an impressive, powerful work.
  5. Mojo
    Sep 12, 2019
    The Return could do with some editing as it's unwieldy 78 minutes risk losing the audience before its finest songs: the epic, autobiographical title track, and the redemptive, gospel-soaked closer Made Us better. But Too much of a good thing is nothing to hold a grudge over. [Oct 2019, p.89]
  6. Sep 23, 2019
    Running 78 minutes, The Return is a dynamic suite of a record, touching on multiple genres without losing focus. ... The Return occasionally feels like it’s beating you over the head. But that’s also part of its charm.
  7. Sep 13, 2019
    Tembo is undoubtedly an intriguing addition to rap’s increasingly rich tapestry – albeit one yet to land on a sonic palette as fresh and compelling as her perspective.

See all 9 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Sep 15, 2019
    With an arresting, and dizzying set of flows. An apparent bottomless knowledge of hip hop harmony and flow. And an uncanny & mysticalWith an arresting, and dizzying set of flows. An apparent bottomless knowledge of hip hop harmony and flow. And an uncanny & mystical knowledge and grasp for silver-age B-Boy rhythms and 90’s era deep cuts - Sampa pimp slaps rap’s problematic gender norms out of existence and devours the “uncool factor” of female emcees in a puritanically male world - one breathless verse at a time. She truly is “the Great”. And The Return is too. Expand

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