From Black Pearl to winning awards and touring the world, Moana Maniapoto has gathered a group of intelligent and amazing musicians to travel with her as Moana and The Tribe, showcasing and uplifting Māori culture. ‘Rima’ is a bilingual electronic-tinted journey, encapsulating their live shows and taonga puoro/haka/urban fusion music.
There is a range of styles vocally, hints from childhood rhymes through to a capella arrangements. What unites the whole album is the kaupapa (theme) of Aoteaora/NZ, the challenges of society and holding on to Māori beliefs in this changing world. Musically it’s also the beautifully placed drums, percussion and instrumentation. Moana’s vocal delivery is very emotive and though her words are simplistic, she readily conveys her message, even across international language barriers.
Kapahaka elements are seamlessly placed into each song, with the beats deep and groovy thanks to the wonderful Paddy Free, of Pitch Black fame, who has become a Tribe member. As always Free’s production is world class, giving this album a super high finish. Moana and the Tribe are a group of premium selected artists also including Mahuia Bridgman-Cooper, Marika Hodgson and Horomona Horo among others. ‘Rima’ also engages Don McGlashan, Grant Haua, te reo consultant Scotty Morrison with Angus MacNaughton on mastering duties.