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Album Review

Oceania is what happens when Maori culture — the music and traditions of New Zealand's native people — collides with the modern world. The result is an interesting spiritual palette of new sonic possibilities that combine ancient chants, spacy symphonics, and soaring chants in the native language (translated to English in the notes). At the heart of this group are Maori instruments, legends, history, and language, presented to the world for the first time by poet and singer Hinewehi Mohi and the late singer of British post-punk band Killing Joke, Jaz Coleman. Mohi's mother is New Zealand/European, but it is from her Maori father that she acquired her sense of cultural identity, which she conveys here on 11 mostly lilting tracks, with spiritual and exotic electronic elements. The English titles give a universal sense to the new age vibe of the album: "Union," "People," "Goddess of Music," and "Self Determination." It's a pleasant, relaxing listen, but only for people who really want to explore the culture of New Zealand. The rest of us might just use it as background music.

Customer Reviews

Just Wonderful.

I have one of the most eclectic musical tastes of anyone I know...and this definitely has a safe spot in my collection. She ha sa very beautiful voice, I am in love with the Maori language, great tribal/rooty/folky feels to some of the songs, but thanks to Jaz Coleman there is also some great programming going on to add to the overall world groove feel of the album. Highlights are definitely 'Kotahitanga' and 'Hautoa', while 'He Tangata', 'Hineraukatauri', and 'Haere Ra' are also beautiful and breathtaking. I wish they would put some more music on the market!!!

LOVE 2 songs

i absolutely love two of the songs (Pukea and Kotahitanga). the others are still growing on me. but those 2 songs may be some of my absolute favorties. i'm so glad that itunes got this cd!

Reflects a beautiful cultural heritage

I found this album while I was writing a research paper on Maori music. I was thrilled to find a modern take on the beautiful and rich musical heritage of the Maori. This is an exotic-sounding album, perfect for a rainy day or dinner party. Never loud or strident, it has a constant pulsing energy and is an album you can listen to over and over. I would recommend buying the whole album- all the songs are amazing.


Genre: Social Science

Years Active: '90s, '00s

What Enigma did for Gregorian chanting and Deep Forest did for African Pygmy song, New Zealand's Oceania does for traditional Maori music. The group is centered around vocalist/composer Hinewehi Mohi and producer/arranger/composer Jaz Coleman (originally of the industrial/punk/metal band Killing Joke), who blend live Maori instruments and percussion with modern dance beats, atmospheric...
Full Bio
Oceania, Oceania
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Customer Ratings