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World Citizen

From Melbourne, Australia comes a very strong vocal CD from an all-woman acapella band called Akasa. These 4 young women are very effective at forming and communicating political and social messages with their powerful vocal style. Creating a tapestry of intricate and elaborate harmonies and shouts, Akasa aim to entertain, move and energize you with their music. Acapella singing without much accompaniment is not a musical style we hear a lot of these days, but Akasa do it with energy and great aplomb.

"Human Zoo"
World Citizen is their first full-length CD, and it's a winner. It incorporates traditional Maori songs and dance pieces, their own songs of humor and fun, and a strong political emphasis. Think of a Sweet Honey in the Rock from down under. With simple percussion on some songs, Akasa deliver a strong emotional message about human rights, globalization, protecting the environment, and similar themes with passion, power and skill.

Songs like "Pin Ye Bo" with its African roots, "Human Zoo" with its nod to Bobby McFerrin, "Singing the Land" accompanied by a didjeridoo, and "Walk With Me" done in a traditional gospel style show Akasa to be proficient in variety of vocalization techniques.

Each of the singers contributes to the body of original songs, and each takes a turn singing lead. Vicki King, Mihi Rangi, Heidi Bradburn, and Melanie Shanahan all offer a different piece of this very wonderful musical pie. Each is a powerful singer, but it's the harmonies they create together which will send chills down your spine. "Drifting," "Slave," and "Rereahu" are all highlights in this regard.

Their songs are filled with emotion, strength of purpose, and seamless harmony singing. The power of the human voice is something to behold, and these fine musicians use and develop theirs toward building a better world. In this day and age with such rampant pessimism, it's refreshing to hear people expressing these sentiments with such power and skill. - David Smith

"Human Zoo" (p)(c)2002 Akasa, used by permission CD available from cdRoots

Visit Akasa on the web: www.akasa.com.au

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