13 Jul 2024
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Dillastrate - Single Review: Taku Aroha

09 Sep 2022 // A review by Trevor Faville

Dillastrate is made up of drummer/vocalist Henare 'H' Kaa and Tim Driver who handles Keys/loops/vocals, adding MC Luis Mill for live work. This group comes with a background of considerable musical skill and experience and brings this all to bear with their latest single Taku Aroha.

Right from the off, Taku Aroha has the melodic strength and assurance in playing that might be expected from musicians with this level of experience. Dillastrate build Taku Aroha from a basis of mid-tempo funky groove and have arranged the tune with care in terms of timbre, feel and some intelligent chord voicings.

Where experience and musical skill really come to the fore is the way the dynamics have been handled in this song- changing down a gear for the for the first chorus, then building a measured crescendo through the second and into a powerful coda section that not only ties the song together in a lyrical sense, but does not waste time either. Structurally this song has been balanced with great care to powerful effect. If you don't listen to this song all the way through, then you are genuinely missing out.

The lyrical focus is on the role of parents, and parenting. The choice of using Te Reo Maori, however, means that a summary like that is only surface deep at best. A more in depth analysis shows a lyrical approach that has quite a tangible blend of personal experience and much broader sense of Place. It's a unique perspective- and quite a refreshing lens for songwriting expression, especially for those of us who are still gaining sufficient fluency.

Taku Aroha stands tall on its melodic strength and the assurance of the musicians in the arrangement and delivery.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )
 

About Dillastrate

Dillastrate just can’t sit still. Driven by a deep love for live performance, in two short years the New Zealand duo has completed a staggering nine national tours, tackling staple music festival stages including Northern Bass, Rhythm & Vines and Electric Avenue. A live performance by the duo ensures that no foot is left untapping, with entire venues transitioning from stationary to dancing-their-arses-off in a matter of one song.

Dillastrate describe their signature sound as neosoul pop – a product of intense refinement and humanizing machines, combining modern digital sounds with analogue soul to provide the best of both worlds. A heavy hat tip to funk legends Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson mingles with current soul, hip-hop, jazz and electronic sounds that seems to leave audiences open-mouthed and itching for more.

Members Henare 'H' Kaa (drums, lead vocals) and Tim Driver (keyboards, loops, vocals) realized the potential for Dillastrate while playing together in multiple groups, including kiwi staples AHoriBuzz and Soulsystem. With the ability to perform using all the necessary instruments with just the two of them, Dillastrate are agile and determined to play for appreciative audiences wherever and whenever possible. As working session musicians, the pair have worked with an intimidating host of national and international acts, including members of The Rolling Stones and a host of New Zealand’s top talent.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Dillastrate

Releases

Narrative
Year: 2021
Type: EP

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