Toitū Te Pūoro is Al’s solo album of ngā taonga pūoro music with vocals. Toitū Te Pūoro begins as a meditation on Te Korekore. The music then moves into Te Pō and through Te Ao Mārama. Toitū Te Pūoro was selected by mic.gr (Greece) as one of the best albums of 2018 a 5 star review from muzic.net.nz and this work has been compared to the works NZ composer greats Lilburn and Rimmer.
“This is a poetic, mysterious, deep immersion album which could take the listener back in, and beyond, time and space.” Graham Reid – Elsewhere
With Ponguru, Phil and Al bring together the low voice of the double bass and the many voices of taonga pūoro in an exploration of timbre, space, melody, and our shared musical language.
“The soundtrack to dreams, myths and the dark landscapes of Aotearoa.” Graham Reid – Elsewhere
“And this shining example of “art” music won’t always be a comfortable listen, but it’s forever destined to be a worthwhile one.” Simon Sweetman.
Shearwater Drift is a vast sonic collage that explores real and imagined landscapes. The compositions are created from pieces of sonic architecture utilising elements from the man made environment, the land, ocean, and sky, and those strange places in between where sound is a hybrid. Many of the sounds are unique to New Zealand, in fact some are unique to Wellington, while others are from Scotland.
“it is a journey for those who choose a different path, perhaps one that quieter and more intellectual. This is definitely a headphone album. One to meditate or contemplate with. This is music for taking time out of the craziness of the modern world.” Radio 13
U.K Taonga Pūoro was released in May 2017 as chronicles the taonga pūoro held in museum collections at Cuming Museum London, Edinburgh University, SCVA Norwich and Aberdeen University.
A group of traditional Māori and contemporary musicians, who embarked on a recording project on the Whanganui River released this album of music composed and recorded on the River, for the River. A collaborative music project featuring environmental improvisations and compositions.
This album was recorded during Alistair’s 2015 research trip. This album features interplay between ngā taonga.
The voices of the taoka tāwhito (ancient treasures) in theses compositions are from taoka pūoro that reside in the collection of Okain’s Bay Māori and Colonial Museum, Banks Peninsula. Thanks to Murray Thacker for his support with this project. CD’s can be bought from Okains Bay Māori and Colonial Museum.
In 2011 Alistair held a Wild Creations Artist Residency (CNZ DoC) at Masons Bay, Rakiura/Stewart Island where he researched and created taoka pūoro from the environment based on research of taoka from Murihiku and surrounds. He produced an album of music and touring exhibition.
In late 2007 a bunch of Wellington musicians got together in an old woolshed in Takaka Valley, New Zealand, to record some songs. From this summertime gathering at the top of the South Island, The Woolshed Sessions project was born: a critically acclaimed limited edition album and a live show that sold out by word of mouth alone.
The Woolshed Sessions is a fresh approach for New Zealand songwriting and performance, reflective of the woolshed’s idyllic Golden Bay surroundings, and distinguished by lashings of lap-steel guitar, lush vocal harmony sing-a-longs, taonga puoro – traditional Maori instruments – and banjo punctuations.
The album skillfully layers the haunting and almost melancholic tones of taonga pūoro with the light and joyful notes of the classical guitar – taking the listener on a journey through the ancient aural landscape of Aotearoa.
The group’s unique blend of improvisation and composition also features contemporary and traditional Maori pātere (chants), waiata (songs), and karakia (prayers), which flow seamlessly over the music.
The Wellington-based trio consist of taonga pūoro practitioners Henare Walmsley and Alistair Fraser, and classical guitarist and composer Michael Hogan.