26 Oct 2020
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Articles By Isla Norman

Lainey - EP Review: Balloons
21 Oct 2020 // review by Isla Norman
South Island native Lainey is bursting into the music scene after her debut singles You Should Stay and Wanted To Tell You dropped. Taking inspiration from Billie Eilish, Elliot Smith and Dodie, Lainey’s music is sure to impact you.
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Club Classic - Single Review: Richie Whiskey
24 Sep 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Club Classic are an energetic indie-funk band from Wellington looking to make their mark on the Aotearoa music scene by making people dance. Inspired by legends Parcels, Sticky Fingers and Red Hot Chilli Peppers, the four piece specialise in dynamic and groovy jams.
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Madeleine Howard - EP Review: Just Reaching Out
02 Sep 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Following the success of her singles No More and Missing Pieces, Madeleine Howard has released her much anticipated debut EP Just Reaching Out. Howard describes the EP as "a long time coming".
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Aro - EP Review: He Manu Ano
28 Aug 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Aro are a husband and wife duo who share a passion for the power of language and music to tell stories and remind us of our cultural identity. In celebration of Aotearoa’s magical wildlife, Aro have released a five track EP inspired by native birds.
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Valere - Single Review: Undercover
20 Aug 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Following the success of her earlier releases Like That and Make Believe, Valere is back with her most sincere piece of work to date. Undercover begins with a choir of synths and swells into the questions "Do you know if your minds made up yet?
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Samantha Josephine - Album Review: Feeling In The Strange
20 Aug 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Hailing from Ladysmith, South Africa, Samantha Josephine is the mastermind behind the Feeling In The Strange album. Her sound is crisp and enchanting, and her lyrics feel as though they were written in another universe.
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Raw Collective - Single Review: Waiting for Sunrise
13 Aug 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Raw Collective are the snowball of a ten-piece whose name gathers interest with each turn. The Wellington Hip-Hop collective spent the past few years bring their music to the world through headlining tours and festivals in New Zealand and overseas.
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Valkyrie - Single Review: Good Thing
06 Aug 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Valkyrie is back with the catchy bop to end all catchy bops: Good Thing. This South Auckland based three piece produce famously groovy music that touches on elements of arena rock, pop and RnB.
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Farandicus - Single Review: CSM
23 Jul 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Farandicus is a six-piece from Northland. Their rich harmonies and complex instrumental arrangements allow for an impressive discography of engaging releases.
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Madeleine Howard - Single Review: Missing Pieces
30 Jun 2020 // review by Isla Norman
From a young age Madeleine Howard was inspired by female New Zealand artists. Brooke Fraser, Anika Moa and Lorde resonated with her.
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Roonie - Single Review: My Heart
22 Jun 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Taupo born Michaela Pointon started songwriting when she was 12, and released her debut EP Human Nature in her final year of high school. In 2019 the young artist adopted the moniker Roonie, and chased her musical dreams to Auckland.
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Marina Bloom and Moving Stuff - Single Review: Let's Pretend
29 May 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Russian singer-songwriter Marina Bloom has embraced lockdown as a time of creativity and expression through releasing a series of singles entitled Songs of Isolation. Ordinarily influenced by the likes of Celine Dion and Fleetwood Mac, her latest single Let’s Pretend is a grungier offering than her listeners may have expected.
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Sofia Machray - Single Review: Handstands
25 May 2020 // review by Isla Norman
“Indie-pop fantasizer” Sofia Machray is stirring up the music scene with her debut single Handstands. Having made a name for herself performing at festivals and opening for indie-rock band Racing, it’s exciting to see her step into the studio.
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Imperial April - Single Review: Peachy
13 May 2020 // review by Isla Norman
While Imperial April’s debut single was released this May, they are no strangers to the music scene. Victoria and Andy Knopp have worked on various projects over the years, including electro-pop band The Response and a handmade CD for Mother’s Day.
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Echo Children - Single Review: Flowerbeds
04 May 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Echo Children are "a band of foreigners formed in the melting pot of Auckland". With members hailing from Scotland, Sweden, the UK and Canada the group pull influences from Springsteen, Ryan Adams and Fleetwood Mac.
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Reb Fountain - Album Review: Reb Fountain
30 Apr 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Reb Fountain’s latest release is more than an album: it’s a sonic experience. The songs are innovative and varied - there’s reason to give attention to every track.
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Farandicus - Double Single Review: Shame On You / Throwaway Youth
10 Apr 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Farandicus’ style is an amalgamation of the varied musical backgrounds of its members. Their latest dual release of Shame on You and Throwaway Youth will make you move.
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Foley - EP Review: On My Conscience
01 Apr 2020 // review by Isla Norman
The infectiously fun Foley are back with the five track EP to keep you grooving through your isolation. On My Conscience offers insight into the buzzing minds of Ash Wallace and Gabriel Everett.
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Yasamin - Single Review: October
24 Mar 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Activist and musician Yasamin’s single October was written about the ongoing anti-government protests in Iraq and inspired by the hideousness of the Christchurch mosque shooting. She used the song as an outlet, and in an attempt to bring more attention to the “ongoing brutality being used against peaceful protestors in Iraq”.
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Bianca Isabel - Single Review: Will It Be Enough?
13 Mar 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Singer-songwriter Bianca Isabel is prolific and talented. Her Instagram is riddled with song ideas and pictures of her performing at local venues.
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O Juliet - Album Review: Unlash the Boats
12 Mar 2020 // review by Isla Norman
New Plymouth based band O Juliet have released their debut album, the mystical and mysterious Unlash the Boats. The album begins with a shuffling rhythm section and smooth electric keyboard as Juliet herself laments the pain of losing what she mistook for love.
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EmRiver - Album Review: Heart to Heart
03 Mar 2020 // review by Isla Norman
This album begins with the mellow and mystical Heart to Heart. EmRiver uses beautiful counter melodies and a tambourine to make the listener feel like they are walking into a clearing in the forest.
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Molly Devine - Single Review: Call Me Up
27 Feb 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Dunedin pop singer Molly Devine has just released the perfect song for your honeymoon phase. Call Me Up is uplifting and hopeful.
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Thomas Brothers - Interview with Thomas Brothers
04 Feb 2020 // interview by Isla Norman
The Thomas Brothers are a band of four brothers. Consisting of four siblings, Sam, Josh, Joe and Ben.
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Raylee Bradfield - Album Review: Where Wildflowers Grow
01 Feb 2020 // review by Isla Norman
South Island singer-songwriter Raylee Bradfield has always felt connected to nature. For five generations, her family has lived in the rugged edge of Aotearoa, surrounded by rolling hills and immersed in the vibrant changing of the seasons.
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Peyton Morete - Single Review: Sky City
30 Jan 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Kapiti based singer/songwriter Peyton Morete has been writing songs since she was 9. She won “best lyrics” at her regional Rockquest final when she was 10, describing the memory as "not bad for a little kid that was still learning spelling lists for homework".
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Thomas Brothers - Album Review: Together
24 Jan 2020 // review by Isla Norman
Four-piece family band Thomas Brothers are starting 2020 with the exciting release of their second album Together. Having played music together since they were learning to walk, forming a band was a natural progression for the talented family.
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Solomon Crook - Interview: Solomon Crook
19 Nov 2019 // interview by Isla Norman
Musical maverick Solomon Crook first caught New Zealand's attention in 2015 when he impressed the crowd at the national Smokefree Rockquest final. He's since released his debut EP Abandon Adolescence and the single The Day I Thought About Dying.
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Solomon Crook - Single Review: The Day I Thought About Dying
14 Nov 2019 // review by Isla Norman
Following the success of his 2018 EP Abandon Adolescence, Solomon Crook’s The Day I Thought About Dying is just as well produced and complex. The song tip-toes the line between catchy and thought-provoking.
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Shana Grace - EP Review: Hello, It's Me Again
12 Nov 2019 // review by Isla Norman
Kiwi singer/songwriter Shana Grace welcomes the listener to her debut EP with the words "Hello, it’s me again". The sound of pages rustling evoke the feeling that you are sitting cross legged on her living room floor as she tells you about her day.
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NZ Top 10 Singles

  • MOOD
    24kGoldn feat. Iann Dior
  • HOLY
    Justin Bieber feat. Chance The Rapper
  • LEMONADE
    Internet Money And Gunna feat. Don Toliver And NAV
  • SAVAGE LOVE (LAXED - SIREN BEAT)
    Jawsh 685 x Jason DeRulo
  • WAP
    Cardi B feat. Megan Thee Stallion
  • DREAMS
    Fleetwood Mac
  • WHAT YOU KNOW BOUT LOVE
    Pop Smoke
  • HEAD & HEART
    Joel Corry feat. MNEK
  • IN THE AIR
    L.A.B.
  • PUT YOUR RECORDS ON
    Ritt Momney
View the Full NZ Top 40...
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