19 Sep 2020
UsernamePassword

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

Aro - Album Review: Manu

29 Nov 2018 // A review by Corinne Rutherford

Aro; the husband and wife team made up of Charles and Emily Looker, will be releasing their debut album titled Manu (bird) in February 2019. This ten-track album is a bilingual Te Reo Maori and English native bird inspired project. It is, in short, delightful.

Having met Charles and Emily and seen Aro play live, when I listened to this album my first thought was this is the perfect fit for them. Combining Charles (Ngapuhi) first learnt language of Te Reo with English, this album captures the fun and cheeky essence of the couple whilst also telling stories inspired by native bird song.

It all started with the song of a Tui and evolved into a magical album of storytelling inspired by nature.

The captivating and hauntingly beautiful sound of taonga puoro played by Shane Mclean can be heard weaving its magical sound throughout the album. The duo effortlessly moves between Te Reo and the English languages creating a fresh sound “through songs that are memorable with words that are encouraging and fun to sing”. This is a sound which should appeal to the target audience of a younger crowd “this uniquely ‘Kiwi’ album can help young people feel proud of who they are”.

These are catchy songs which incorporate the personality of each bird. Each one of the birds which are featured on this album is distinctive to New Zealand. The melodies and rhythms of these native birds can be heard clearly coming through in each track. The couple’s voices complementing one another, creating layers of vocal harmonies on top of each other. “Engaging narrative and vivacious lyrics “The essence of the native birds of Aotearoa has been captured in the narrative of each song through vocal hooks, Maori rhythms, chants and expressive instrumentation”.

As I type this there is a Tui singing to me from the tree outside. Possibly one of the most beautiful sounds you can hope to hear.

Also, as I am in the process of collating my thoughts about Manu, I came across Aro's interview by Lora (also of Muzic.net.nz). I loved what Charles had to say in the very last line “Making this album has been like making a waka that you don’t know what it could do until you put it out to sea”

This is lively and cheerful yet at the same time inspiring and engaging. I was completely captivated by the stories told through the birds and I very much look forward to seeing Aro perform this album live.

This is currently my go-to album to take a break from the world and let the music wash over me. I heard the love which went into making Manu, filter through the music.

Aro suits this couple perfectly ‘Aro mai, Aro atu, Aroha’ To face, to be faced, to love.

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )
 

About Aro

Aro consists of husband and wife Charles (Ngapuhi, Te Rarawa, Ngati Te Ata, Te Ati Awa) and Emily Looker (nee Rice). The pair share a passion for the power of language and music to tell stories and remind us of our cultural identity. The duo were finalists for the Maioha Award at the Silver Scrolls (2019) and the APRA Best Children’s Song Award for their song Korimako (2020).




Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Aro

Releases

Manu
Year: 2019
Type: Album
Van Jams
Year: 2018
Type: EP
Aro
Year: 2017
Type: EP

Other Reviews By Corinne Rutherford

Researchintospeed - Single Review: Anode
15 Sep 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
Papaioea’s own proponent of live electronic dance music Researchintospeed has just dropped a new track and accompanying video, Anode. As part of the stand-alone electronic work of Craig Black, Anode was added to his expanding electro catalog over lock down.
Read More...
Hazza Making Noise - Single Review: Boomers In Disguise
10 Sep 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
Auckland based Cantabrian, disillusioned architect and sausage roll enthusiast Harry Platt who goes under the pseudonym Hazza Making Noise, has just released a new single called Boomers In Disguise. Cross a football chant with a rock opera and inject it with punk-rave then you will have a fair idea about the unique concept which Harry describes as having "an early Arctic Monkeys – Brianstormesque nature to it".
Read More...
Mirrors - Single Review: Got This Feeling
09 Sep 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
Originally starting out as a covers band in 2017, Christchurch based acoustic pop duo Mirrors expanded their repertoire this year during lockdown, taking the opportunity to write and record seven original songs in their home studio. Got This Feeling is their catchy brand-new second single release.
Read More...
Julie Lamb - Album Review: How Humans Think
04 Sep 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
The first thing I noticed when I was blessed with a physical copy of Julie Lamb Outfit’s brand new eight track album How Humans Think, was the outstanding amount of work and love which has gone into the packaging of the CD. It is a creative thing of beauty to which I will elaborate further on.
Read More...
Darryl Baser - Album Review: #Second Selfie
31 Aug 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
In true Darryl Baser fashion, his latest album has taken a few years to develop. Following on from his 2016 LP Raw Selfie, the album #Second Selfie has taken flight, once again from his Dunedin based living room.
Read More...
EJ Barrett - Single Review: Paint Me A Picture
06 Aug 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
It didn’t take me long to warm to EJ Barrett and her sultry, husky vocals. The New Zealand musical artist based in New Plymouth has taken flight with the debut single Paint Me A Picture.
Read More...
Something Zesty - Single/Video Review: Pipz
05 Aug 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
Something Zesty is a Whanganui based musical artist who captured my attention first by the bold claim that the latest offering is "an unmistakable dance-floor hit" and secondly by the vibrant and appropriately spaced out animated video which turned out to be the perfect accompaniment to his latest release; Pipz. The music video is the second animated adventure for two curious looking characters, Chambzy and Zestro, following on from Something Zesty’s first single Mad About It.
Read More...
Danica Bryant - EP Review: Cider
30 Jul 2020 // by Corinne Rutherford
Napier’s young singer-songwriter Danica Bryant showcases powerful vocals on her debut 4 track EP, Cider. Currently based in Wellington, this is one lady who is not afraid to express herself through strong powerful lyrics and fierce emotion, and boy…does she have the lungs to pull it off.
Read More...
View All Articles By Corinne Rutherford

NZ Top 10 Singles

  • WAP
    Cardi B feat. Megan Thee Stallion
  • MOOD
    24kGoldn feat. Iann Dior
  • SAVAGE LOVE (LAXED - SIREN BEAT)
    Jawsh 685 x Jason DeRulo
  • LEMONADE
    Internet Money And Gunna feat. Don Toliver And NAV
  • IN THE AIR
    L.A.B.
  • LAUGH NOW CRY LATER
    Drake feat. Lil Durk
  • GO CRAZY
    Chris Brown And Young Thug
  • HEAD & HEART
    Joel Corry feat. MNEK
  • MOOD SWINGS
    Pop Smoke feat. Lil Tjay
  • ROCKSTAR
    DaBaby feat. Roddy Ricch
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