CD Koi Au (CD 987786),
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1. Dragon Throws Out Pearl
2. Bali Kamaha'o
3. E Nihi Ka Hele
4. Slack Key No. 1
6. Koi: Emergence/Current of Life/Epilogue: Emergence / Current Of Life / Epilogue
7. Ka Wailele O Nu'uanu
8. Ku'u Lei' Awapuhi
13. Koke'e Cabin
14. Far from Home
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 13083
Kevin Hughes; Pierre Grill; Porter Miller
Personnel includes: Makana (vocals, guitar); Jason Pell (violin); Lono Kaumeheiwa (nose flute, electric bass, background vocals); James Roberts (electric bass); Jan Jefferies (hand drums, percussion).
Personnel: Makana (guitar, electric guitar, 12-string guitar, nylon-string guitar); Cyril Pahinui (guitar); Jason Pell (violin); Pierre Grill (piano); Byron Yasui (double bass); James Roberts (electric bass); Jack Jeffries (percussion); Stephen Fox (gong).
Audio Mixers: Kevin Hughes; Pierre Grill.
Recording information: 'Ihiuka Studios; Rendezvous Recording.
Translator: Puakea Nogelmeier.
Arrangers: Makana; Cyril Pahinui.
Koi Au is the sophomore release from the young Makana, who spent his apprentice years learning from the likes of the Pahinuis and Sonny Chillingworth. Here, he showcases a sort of new direction for slack key guitar, as he works through some standard forms (including a slack key instrumental penned originally by Chillingworth), but also mixes in pieces of world music, with some Portuguese fado making an appearance as well as a Chinese zheng. In the opening track, he switches between slack key guitar and an open-tuned (slack key) zheng, providing a Chinese ambience while playing in a Hawaiian style. After a piece in tribute of Bali, he duets with Cyril Pahinui and follows with a solo performance of the Chillingworth instrumental. The centerpiece of the album follows soon, with the lengthy instrumental "Koi" in three movements, based in some part on a Willie K. tune. It's here that Makana shows off his full ability on slack key, running through quick passages and more emotional, slow passages with equal grace. A couple of nice Hawaiian vocal numbers continue the series, with one love song in English following them in turn. Then comes another piece of cultural fusion, as he sings a good Portuguese fado in the aptly titled "Fado" while playing a relatively upbeat slack key accompaniment. After a few more instrumental pieces, the album closes on the slightly moody electric "Far from Home." It's a full spectrum of new interpretations of the old slack key genre that Makana showcases here, and a number of interesting directions are taken. While the classic masters of slack key are outstanding in their own right, this is a worthwhile endeavor on Makana's part, and deserves at least one listen, even by the purists out there. ~ Adam Greenberg
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Punahele Productions 13083
Alternative Dis. Alliance
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