The full soundtrack to the forthcoming second Black Panther film, titled Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – Music From and Inspired By, has been released.
The 19-track album, which runs at one hour and three minutes (just under half the running time of the actual film), includes tracks from Burna Boy, Future, Stormzy, E-40, Fireboy DML, PinkPantheress and Rema.
There’s also music from South African DJ and producer DBN Gogo, Mexican poet and rapper Mare Advertencia, South African musician Sino Msolo, American rapper Tobe Nwigwe, South African dancer and singer Kamo Mphela and Nigerian singer-songwriter CKay.
The album runs a gamut of emotions and styles – from intense rap tracks to laid-back reggae, dancehall and R&B tracks, through a more upbeat Latin number, to Rihanna’s atmospheric ballad Lift Me Up.
Nigerian singer-songwriter Tems, who has won two BET Awards and a Soul Train Music Award and who has worked with Justin Bieber and Drake, also created her own version of Bob Marley and the Wailers’s No Woman No Cry for the forthcoming film.
The album opens with Lift Me Up, Rihanna’s first solo music release since 2016 and a tribute to the late actor Chadwick Boseman, who led the first film as King T’Challa. It was written with Tems and Swedish composer Ludwig Göransson.
Speaking about Lift Me Up, Tems said: “After speaking with Ryan and hearing his direction for the film and the song, I wanted to write something that portrays a warm embrace from all the people that I’ve lost in my life. I tried to imagine what it would feel like if I could sing to them now and express how much I miss them.”
Stormzy’s track, titled Interlude, also seems to be a kind of tribute to Boseman and T’Challa, with Stormzy singing, “Who do I turn to, when I need saving, cos’ you moved mountains, I can’t do the same. And did you think about it, when you left us, I know it’s selfish, but I can’t help it.”
Burna Boy shared a video on Instagram of him making the track Alone, to mark the release of the soundtrack album.
The second instalment of the franchise is set to be released on November 11. It sees Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke and Florence Kasumba reprise their leading roles, with director Ryan Coogler and composer Ludwig Göransson also returning for the second instalment.
Michaela Cole (I May Destroy You), Dominique Thorne (If Beale Street Could Talk), Tenoch Huerta (Narcos: Mexico and Here on Earth) and Mabel Cadena, (Dance of the 41) have also joined the cast.
After Boseman’s tragic early death from cancer in 2020, there was a moment when it was not certain there would be a second Black Panther instalment.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly director Coogler said, “I was at a point when I was like, ‘I’m walking away from this business’. I didn’t know if I could make another movie period [or] another Black Panther movie, because it hurt a lot.
“I was poring over a lot of conversations that we had, towards what I realised was the end of his life,” he said. “I decided that it made more sense to keep going.” Since it was announced that the character of T’Challa would not be recast, fans have been desperate to know how Coogler will deal with the king’s absence in the sequel.
The film is set to be a major success – as well as having a star-studded cast and exciting soundtrack, the first film was nominated for seven Oscars, and made over $1.3 billion worldwide. (Standard)