1 Oct 2022

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

Miho Wada - Album Review: Bumpy Road

10 Sep 2015 // A review by Andrew Smit

The Miho Jazz Orchestra (MJO) has produced another album bursting with character and full of vibrant music that is real and alive. With 9 instrumental tracks that take you on a musical journey, where the experience and its meaning is yours to interpret and enjoy, however the linear notes tells you how the inspiration and perspiration behind the songs are from Miho Wada’s “Bumpy” experiences with her pregnancy.

Indeed there is a dynamic mix with plenty of the fast and jovial beats that MJO are known for interspersed with some new slower and very expressive tracks, like the rolling Okinawa Daydream with wonderful flute and the most serene Violin that is just so probing and tender. Miho has a great band which she tours and records with and again they have crafted a tight and uplifting sound, the drums from Jared Desvaux de Marigny are faultless and expressive, while Violinist Pascal Roggen deserves a special mention, he treats us with broad and expressive traditional and electric violin throughout the album and seems like he is bursting with creativity. There is some sax but Miho’s instrument of choice is the Flute where in every measure you can hear the wonderful spirit and energy she has for the music, every tuneful moment her flute magically dances and draws you in with joyful delight. The guitar playing by Andrew Rudolph is excellent, with a superb solo in the chunky Mapua Funk which also has an amazing duel between sax, violin and clavinet.

The album's live room sound is very present and makes the music feel earthy and real, the drum rolls and solos sound great and have a wonderfully audible resonance and appeal. Plus there is the addition of a guest Takumi Motokawa who adds great Piano as well as some Xylophone and very funky Clavinet. The sweet and contemplative Rotorua San is amazingly beautiful with its gentle melody and pipe wind sounding flute, with another soaring Pascal Violin and smooth jazz like bass and piano complete this incredible song. The bands new Bass man Eamon Edmundson-Wells plays an ultra-groovy riff on Mutant Cake Patrol, and Pascal’s experimental violin sounds keeps you intrigued too.

Whether it’s Jazz, Samba, Funk or Reggae, the whole sound produced by the band just oozes charm and personality where the passion and expression shine throughout, it’s a delight for the senses, and so I recommend a trip on the Bumpy Road.


About Miho Wada

Miho Wada is a well established flute and saxophone player from Japan/New Zealand. She trained in Afro Cuban style of flute playing in Santiago de Cuba, Havana and London. She plays and sings a repertoire of her original songs and traditional Japanese music accompanied on Marimba, Violin, Guitar, Bass and Percussion, creating a cutting edge, contemporary world music sound.

Miho has performed in UK, USA, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Switzerland, Malta, France and Cuba.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Miho Wada


Oblong 20.5
Year: 2020
Type: Album
Accidental Journey
Year: 2018
Type: Album
New World Sympathy
Year: 2016
Type: EP
Bumpy Road
Year: 2015
Type: Album
Live At The Lab
Year: 2014
Type: Album
Exit 621
Year: 2013
Type: Album
Year: 2013
Type: EP
Year: 2012
Type: Album
Morning After (Digital Booklet)
Year: 2011
Type: Album
Para Ti
Year: 2011
Type: EP
Year: 2011
Type: EP
Postcards To Your Bed
Year: 2010
Type: Album

Other Reviews By Andrew Smit

Haze Lane - Single/Video Review: Natural Feeling
22 Aug 2022 // by Andrew Smit
Matching the songs title very aptly South Auckland indie band Haze Lane has produced Natural Feeling, a very organic song that does indeed deliver a very smooth natural feeling. The ultra-cool ambient sound is reminiscent to the early roots sound of Six60 and L.
Gig Review: Anthonie Tonnon @ Hollywood Cinema, Auckland - 14/05/2022
16 May 2022 // by Andrew Smit
On a coolish Saturday evening it was great to see a rather large crowd that clearly were so happy and eager to experience a night of live music, and what a perfect venue to stage it at the slightly musty but still majestic Hollywood Cinema in Avondale. Opening the proceedings was the cool 4 piece band Lips with their ambient 80’s groove thanks to the techno synth sounds from keyboardist and singer Steph Brown.
Vogel Town - Single Review: Sludge City
24 Apr 2022 // by Andrew Smit
Interestingly Vogel Town's new song Sludge City begins with an automated telephone voice, and then a street argument which is soon accompanied by a very groovy walking bass line, quickly growing from just a couple of notes to a broad melody of its own. At first the only addition is some nice, nonchalant drum fills, but as the background street noise fades away, the introduction of vibrant reverberating guitar strums adds a final element that completes the ensemble perfectly, and altogether this provides a very cool bluesy vibe.
SKRAM - Single Review: Living Our Lives
22 Mar 2022 // by Andrew Smit
Beginning with some straightforward but quite funky keys your soon steered to a very upbeat and chunky ensemble of music that energetically drives along with its super groovy reggae vibe. SKRAM are a very high energy 3-piece pop group that have delivered a fine tune that embodies their claim of “energetic” perfectly.
Tomorrow People - Album Review: 21
02 Jan 2022 // by Andrew Smit
Tomorrow People have produced a wonderful assemblage of uplifting reggae tunes that are performed and sung with heart and purpose. All 16 tracks are packed with brilliant harmonies that are propelled along by the glorious uplifting off beat rhythmic delight that reggae music delivers so well.
Torn Chorus - Single/Video Review: This City Floats
10 Sep 2021 // by Andrew Smit
From a simple opening beat to a wonderful flourish of acoustic guitars layered with luscious chorus and flange effects, the new single from Torn Chorus, This City Floats, is brought to life with wailing electric lead guitar licks and slides that sound melodically precise and emotive. Crisp vocals tell you about the labour and reward that you get for following the beaten path to the top, which as the video shows so well, is Auckland’s remnant volcanic cones, but the metaphor could be used for any journey in life.
Villainy - EP Review: Dead Sides (The Lost EP)
18 Aug 2021 // by Andrew Smit
How wonderful it is to hear 5 new Villainy songs of rip roaring rock tunes that coalesce intimately in this EP format. There is a so much more spice added to this rock pot than the standard rock fare that you might consume from mainstream radio, and while comparisons to Shihad are apparent with their sound influenced by previous Tom Larkin produced material, but these tracks are self-produced and is a touch more raw and edgy.
Lizard Prom - EP Review: Unusual Pain
22 Jul 2021 // by Andrew Smit
The alternative sound force is strong in this one! With its hypnotic mystical sound Lizard Prom have produced a 3-song EP that is full of compelling transcendent power.
View All Articles By Andrew Smit

NZ Top 10 Singles

    Nicki Minaj
    Chris Brown
    David Guetta And Bebe Rexha
    Eliza Rose And Interplanetary Criminal
    Luude And Mattafix
    Harry Styles
    Steve Lacy
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem