Volume 2023 / A glossy Kenyan music drama with better visuals than sounds


Rap music originated in the African American community, but internationally, there are local music industries diving into the genre, including countries in Africa as well. Kenyan music drama Volume puts theirs on the spotlight, through up-and-coming artist Benja trying to make his way. But the show isn’t just about a musician’s dream– it’s about the crew that surrounds him too. There’s his friend Castillo whose crime and influencer girlfriend can make or break his career. And there’s his girlfriend Lucy, who’s torn between her support and her religious family. Writer-director Tosh Gitonga balances their respective subplots well, able to maintain its watchability through its understanding of the stakes. Volume might be a familiar story, but it’s still an entertaining watch, because it understands how this dream can be tough to reach coming from a rough neighborhood, and how tough it can be to keep this dream pure and unadulterated.

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