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October/November 2015

by Anna Loveys

Fresh Talent: Maya

by Anna Loveys

Fresh Talent: Maya

“Electronica with a bite,” reflects the way rising flame Maya Payne projects her mind’s works into song. Nine months fresh out of Christchurch’’s Burnside High School, Maya’’s on a steady rise with her stripped back, soulful electro-pop, and has appeared like a dark horse in the new school of Kiwi pop. 
Having started recording at the end of last year, Maya has spent the best part of this one creating and refining her debut EP, videos included. The focus has been to find a sound that reflects her current creative vision and style.

“I thought, since it’’s my first EP, I may as well take my time with it. There’’s no point putting something out there that I’’m not going to like, and that I’’m not going to be proud of. I just thought I’’d take my time and get it right.””

Her debut single, If Only somehow featured big on Spotify Poland’’s Viral Top 50 chart, hitting the #1 spot. American DJ PatrickReza produced a sleek remix of the track, which dropped on Earmilk.com earlier this year. Through the internet this young artist has attracted swarms of fans around the world.

“It’’s flipping awesome,”” Maya reflects. “When I wrote that song I didn’’t think much about how it would go. I never expected it would get in some Polish Spotify playlist!””

Throughout the creative and recording process, she’’s been working closely with producers, Josh Fountain and Kabyn Walley (MCHNCL).

“My producer Kabyn [pictured with Maya] is my band at the moment – he plays on stage with me.””

Maya has travelled regularly up to Auckland to lay down demos with Fountain at Golden Age Studio, and also to open for Charli XCX at Auckland’’s Powerstation in May this year.

“I’’d come into the studio with an idea. I’’d write it on the piano – and we’’d just develop that. The process of making a song is crazy – there’’s so, so much that goes into it!””

Her father, or ‘dad-ager’’ as she refers to him, Matt Power, currently takes care of the management side of things, including, presumably, orchestrating the eye-catching video for If Only, shot in Santorini, Greece, and directed by Aucklander Shae Sterling. She dropped a new single, Falling, at the beginning of September, with another compelling European-shot Sterling video clip, in keeping with her sleek visual (and very international) aesthetic.

With a few tracks yet to finish, the EP, which Maya has decided to call ‘The Lucky Ones’’, will be released shortly, after which she has plans to tour NZ, before taking on the world.