7 Dec 2021

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

John Martin - Album Review: Zealander

14 Sep 2021 // A review by Corinne Rutherford
Wellington based Drummer/Singer and multi-instrumentalist; John Martin has just released his third album Zealander. His love of strong pop melodies and James Brown covers shine through on this album mingling with his uniquely upbeat sound. Zealander was just the musical tonic I needed to combat any “Groundhog Day” blues.

Years of playing James Brown covers has given John Martin's music a smooth retro pop vibe and has helped him develop his own refreshing, funky pop electronica sound which shines on this 11-track album. Album artwork was taken by John of a custom 3D model of himself “the Zealander” in a variety of spectacular Wellington locations, which is engaging.

John Martin has an era of musical expertise which has broadened to include the keyboard, bass and guitar. When he felt the urge to write his own music he could “barely string three chords together” however following the punk ethos of ‘I’ll just do it anyway’, John set out to write and record his music. The result is smooth vocals over well written lyrics reflecting his own viewpoint on life. Tight instrumentals and clean recording lend for an enjoyable listening experience.

Launching into it with The Best Song In The World with a strong indication that this was going to be some good nostalgic sounding original 80s synth pop recrafted into a modern 2021 sound.

Moving through Zealander, I could hear the James Brown influence was strong, particularly on Living The Dream, an electronic pop song with a good amount of synth, cowbell and happy vibes.

Track 5 Man Child offered up a curve ball, from the very first chord I was reminded of Talking Heads. More David Byrne, less James Brown.

Each track threw out a funky pop vibe laden with synth. I found Zealander to be refreshing and multidimensional, I heard tones of James Brown, David Byrne and even a hint of David Bowie on the last track, Put It In A Song. This album was like a long walk on the beach during a warm Summer day, it made me feel sunny inside. Which is what we all need right about now.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )

About John Martin

Hailing from the south coast of Wellington, multi-instrumentalist song writer John Martin uses his years of experience playing in a multitude of bands to produce his own unique blend of music.

Starting out in the nineties as the singing drummer for Wildside act Emulsifier, John has gone on to produce his own albums with his third and latest, Zealander featuring a video for the single The Best Song In The World. Several years in the making, these songs reflect John's outlook on life and a certain punk DIY attitude towards the label multi-instrumentalist as well as a new found sense of identity in this Covid world. The album artwork is a series of photographs taken by John of a custom 3D model of himself, "the Zealander" in a variety of spectacular Wellington locations. The album is available for stream/download from MeotropeMusic on Bandcamp.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for John Martin


Year: 2021
Type: Album

Other Reviews By Corinne Rutherford

Sabreen Islam - Single Review: Like A Movie
16 Nov 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Auckland based young singer-songwriter Sabreen Islam has just released her follow up single to Glow in the trilogy of pop-oriented singles. Like A Movie is a track firmly aimed at the youth market "capturing the rift between romcoms and real life".
Alba Rose - EP Review: Silhouette
12 Nov 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Wellington based singer songwriter Alba Rose has released her lush four track EP, Silhouette. A beautifully rich collection of soulful jazz, contemporary in its delivery incorporating an indie-pop and neo-soul sound wrapped around playful harmonious lyrics.
Older - Album Review: HUMAN+
31 Oct 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Waikato based British producer Jel Legg and Kiwi singer Julie Legg are Post Punk band Older. Following on from their debut album Silence (2019) is their anticipated second album HUMAN+, which is due for release 1st November 2021.
Disciple Pati - Single/Video Review: Serious
19 Aug 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Auckland’s newest pop/RnB powerhouse Disciple Pati has just released her latest single Serious, along with a “revenge fantasy” style music video which the artist explains as “channeled my violent inner sadist for this moment so y’all don’t have to”. The video ultimately is about getting payback after a production meeting doesn’t go according to plan.
Valentina - Album Review: Renaissance
10 Aug 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Wellington based Transgressive vocalist and producer Valentina, has just released her debut album Renaissance. Described as a "Hyperpop album", it is filled with wonder, exploring a diverse range of genres such as Bubblegum Pop, UK Garage, Techno, 90's House with elements of Classical and Baroque.
Compilation Review: Blood And Wires Volume Two
20 Jul 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Independent record label Tauranga based Blood And Wires have released Volume Two, the second instalment in a series of original electronic and experimental tracks which takes the listener on a journey through distorted synths through to serene ambient instrumentation. Blood And Wires Volume Two combines the talent of 8 talented New Zealand artists united by the idea of an experimental approach to creating music.
Aanvi . S - Single Review: Music Is My Religion
22 Jun 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Aanvi S is possibly New Zealand’s youngest singer / songwriter, who at just nine has released her debut single Music Is My Religion. Encouragement from her family and friends has seen her blossom into a prolific songwriter inspired by her poetry.
EP Review: TOI
17 Jun 2021 // by Corinne Rutherford
Award winning seven-piece Wellington band TOI (Tunes of I), are releasing their highly anticipated self-titled EP. Accompanying the release is a four date nationwide tour of Wellington, Christchurch, Auckland and Raglan.
View All Articles By Corinne Rutherford

NZ Top 10 Singles

    Elton John And Dua Lipa
    Taylor Swift
    Ed Sheeran
  • STAY
    The Kid LAROI And Justin Bieber
    Silk Sonic
    Lil Nas X feat. Jack Harlow
    Glass Animals
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