2 Apr 2020
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Stan Walker - EP Review: Stan

09 Apr 2018 // A review by Corinne Rutherford

To coincide with the live broadcast of Stan Walker’s powerful and moving documentary, which follows his journey to recovery after being given a cancer diagnosis in 2017, is the release of a 6 track EP titled Stan.

The EP had barely been out a day, and already it had made it to number one in New Zealand.

The opening track Thank You is written by Stan as an ode to his mother April, his “superwoman” as a way of expressing his gratitude for her love and guidance. "After all we've been through, you've never run out of love," Walker sings in the touching tribute. "There's no words to say but 'I love you', so I'ma say thank you - just know it will never, ever be enough." This was start of a beautiful journey through six tracks of emotional, powerful and honest lyrics.

The 6 songs are a thank you to all his supporters. A remarkable gift.

Stan’s vocals, do not appear to have been affected greatly by the removal of his stomach, he still has the powerful and soulful sound he always had. I acknowledge the fear over losing his voice, the sheer physical aspect of singing and all that goes with this, so this is indeed a celebration of his voice rising up once more.

I hadn’t taken much notice of our local singing sensation before. I take notice now. Not only because of Stan's extraordinary journey which got him to this point in his life, but because of the incredible raw emotion and honesty has he expressed when he sings. This is the first time I have had to review an album which has given me chills.

Each track is a poignant reminder of the sheer talent of Stan; however, two stood out for me - Find You ft. Maisey Rika and Whakamoemiti. If ever there was a time in which I have been rendered speechless, unable to put down in words how much these songs affected me, then that time came with these two songs. Find You is an eerily moving and stunning song which sent shivers down my spine. Maisey Rika compliments Stan’s vocals exquisitely. The symbolic lyrics captivate. “The storm may come and the rain will fall. Fire and pain go hand in hand — what more. The sun will rise and I may fall.”

The translation of Whakamoemiti means praising and giving thanks. The song is sung in Te Reo and is delivered with such heartfelt passion and love.

The EP wraps up with the beautiful I Surrender.

This is a stunning sample of the music he has been working on over the years. “This EP has songs I've written 11 years ago, 5 years ago, 3 years ago & now. All these songs were written in break-even times in my life. So, I thought now would be a perfect time for them to be heard, alongside 1 of the biggest times of my life. This isn’t really an indication of what’s to come next, but these songs are for now.”

★★★★★ (5 stars)


Review written by Corinne Rutherford

 

About Stan Walker

Stan Walker may have kick-started his career by winning Australian Idol in 2009, but in the last decade, he’s become a genuine New Zealand idol, loved for his sense of humour, humility, and joy for life as much as he inspires in his roles as a musician and actor.

His success as a New Zealand performing artist across such a variety of mediums is unparalleled. Not only has Stan earned a total of 6 gold and 4 platinum singles as well as 1 double platinum and 1 triple platinum single in New Zealand, he’s collected 8 New Zealand Music Awards along the way and 5 ARIA Music Award nominations. He’s won the Waiata Maori Award for Radio Airplay Record of the Year 5 times, in 2010, 2011 and then 3 consecutive years in a row from 2013 - 2015. He’s now become an impressive star of our silver screen too.

In May last year, Stan released his new single New Takeover that followed by a culturally poignant video. It was a new direction for Stan, indicative of the depth of the connection he felt upon returning to live in New Zealand, and pay tribute to his family. Only a couple of months later however, Stan was diagnosed with stomach cancer.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Stan Walker

Releases

Stan
Year: 2018
Type: EP
Truth and Soul
Year: 2015
Type: Album
Inventing Myself
Year: 2013
Type: Album
Let The Music Play
Year: 2011
Type: Album
From The Inside Out
Year: 2010
Type: Album
Introducing
Year: 2009
Type: Album

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