Graham Reid | | 1 min read
The first time I saw Ben Harper play I turned to a pal and said "Taj Marley" and we laughed like drains then went straight to the bar. I felt the same the next time.
Taj Mahal+Bob Marley can never go wrong, but can also never claim to be original.
But we being Kiwis who loved both artists embraced Harper who, in my opinion, didn't make any unique statement until he was well into his career.
And he was a careerist.
There's something in the Kiwi psyche which embraces the easy and familiar (hence our genre of undemanding but enjoyable barbecue reggae) and Ahoribuzz -- helmed by the ridiculously talented guitarist Aaron Takona formerly of Weta, Cairo Knife Fight, Fly My Pretties etc -- have located that subconscious place with this polished little outing.
The way I see it, if Ahoribuzz reeled out these easy and instantly familiar good grooves alongside some of the 187 covers Aaron Takona claims this band has learned (yep, he claims they had to learn one hundred and eighty seven other-people songs) then . . .
Man, how could that go wrong?
Especially when this mini-album -- five songs, three remixes and two acoustic versions -- works with Stevie Wonder funk-soul (Turnaround), weaves in those classy low grooves familiar from Trinity Roots and Fat Freddy's Drop (the subtle 10 minute-plus Glitter in the Gutter) and lightly chipping disco-funk (Providence) and so much more.
And of course there's a more overt reggae lope given to Rhombus remix of Glitter in the Gutter.
There's a slo-dance mood throughout and a whole lotta old school soul which people can immediately connect to for its vague familiarity. The intro to the lovely acoustic version of Into the Sunshine with Anika Moa and Anna Coddington is priceless.
Ahoribuzz are a brilliant amalgam of styles all packaged up in a summer shine groove.
If I were Jordan Luck I'd be seriously worried. Because there goes the Christmas/New Year tours around the beaches for the next decade.
That said, Takona has constantly moved his ground . . . so maybe by this time next year he might have put this behind him.
Because this album is that simple.
It's the pleasure principle with a Kiwi-soul-vibe and a horibuzz.
AHORIBUZZ TOUR DATES
Thursday August 27, Wellington - Meow
Friday August 28, Kapiti Coast - Boundary
Saturday August 29, Wanganui - Riverside Bar
Friday September 4, Whakatane - Top Shelf Bar
Saturday September 5, Mt Maunganui - Brewers Bar
Sunday September 6 - A Month Of Sundays w/ special guests @ The Kings Arms, Auckland
Friday September 11, Leigh -Leigh Sawmill
Saturday September 12, Tikipunga - Tikipunga Tavern
Sunday September 13 - A Month Of Sundays w/ special guests @ The Kings Arms, Auckland
Friday September 18, Maungaturoto - Maungaturoto Hotel
Saturday September 19, Opononi - Opononi Hotel
Sunday September 20 - A Month Of Sundays w/ special guests @ The Kings Arms, Auckland
Friday September 25, Raglan – Yot Club
Saturday September 26, Hamilton, Nivara Lounge
Sunday September 27 - A Month Of Sundays w/ special guests @ The Kings Arms, Auckland