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Moa In Motion

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Anika Moa
Anika Moa

Anika Moa, the most un-rock chick in New Zealand music, is back with a new album, which she promises will be the last for a little while, maybe. She talks to DAVE WILLIAMS of NZPA.

Wellington, March 25 NZPA - Singer and songwriter Anika Moa doesn't do Twitter, MySpace or Facebook.

She doesn't live in south Auckland and she doesn't like big waves.

She doesn't like pop stardom and like most people, she doesn't like being bored, so she wrote another album and now she would like you to buy it.

Love in Motion will be released on April 5 and Moa will promote it with a week-long tour in May, followed by a "huge" tour at the end of the year.

The album comes just a few months after her six-week Aroha tour of rural New Zealand late last year, where a lot of the songs were road tested.

The second song, Running Through The Fire, is already getting a healthy share of airplay.

The album was mainly written in Melbourne in July last year, then recorded at Auckland's Roundhead Studios, the Bay of Plenty's Boatshed Studio and at Radio NZ.

It includes Cairo Knife Fight's Nick Gaffney on drums, Chip Matthews on bass and Golden Horse's Geoff Maddock adding a strong guitar flavour to the sound. It was co-produced with Andre Upston.

Moa has taken up a new electric guitar, a Fender, which she says is a different sound, and as a musician she is always trying to get better at doing different things.

"I can't play it very well, that's what I am saying. I wish I could but I can't."

The album took two weeks to write and another two weeks to record.

It also signalled the end of writer's block, which had taken hold for two years.

"When you are touring, when you are working you really don't have time to write. There's a lot of frustration but as soon as I stop touring it all comes.

"I toured for two years on the back of In Swings the Tide (her previous album) and I just got bored.

"So I started to write another album and it seemed to work. But I don't write unless I want to and it seemed like a good two weeks to get amongst it."

Only two weeks?

"Yep, pretty much. I was really bored."

Moa lives in Orewa, north of Auckland, famed pretty much for the large number of retirees living there.

But she dismisses Orewa as being behind any boredom.

Orewa is not the typical musician's hang out, but her partner's family live there and there are a lot of family get togethers.

"I went to the Orewa markets and this Maori lady said 'what are you doing here". I said I live here and she said `that's out of it that you live in Orewa, surely you live in Manukau or Otara'.

"I know it is God's holding pen but there's a beautiful beach with no waves."

Moa, now 29, grew up in Christchurch. As a teenager she entered the Smokefreerockquest, and after recording a demo in Christchurch, Atlantic Records, a giant, New York-based label invited her to meet the boss.

She sang her songs barefoot in his plush office and landed herself a record contract. Thinking Room, her first album, debuted at No. 1 on New Zealand album charts in 2001.

Moa toured extensively on the back of Thinking Room, and the record company had arranged for two years of touring and interviews in the United States.

But Moa, despite liking the US, didn't want to become the star the record industry there wanted her to be.

She returned to New Zealand and continued her performing and recording career here.

Love in Motion is her fourth album.

"I just basically do this album, release it, tour the shit out of it and then back to square one."

However, after this one she plans to take a break from music spend time on family and focus on other things.

"I say that all the time but I am positive it will happen this time around."

This year is a big one for Moa. She married her wife, burlesque artist Azaria Universe earlier this year after coming out in 2007.

She says the move has not overshadowed any of her life or music.

"I am not really sure. I don't pay attention, it hasn't really hindered my career. Being gay isn't going to stop people from buying my albums, unless they are Christians and hardcore.

"It's not a crime and people are supportive, and my family love me."

So she will be living in Orewa for a wee while, and if she got the chance to return to the States the answer was a definite no.

"I liked it, I didn't like the direction it was taking me. I am strong enough and confident enough to know where my strengths lay, and they don't lay in America.

"If I wanted to I could, but I don't want to, I really don't want to, it makes me feel sick thinking about it.

"It's not the life for me, I don't want to be a popstar. I don't want to be the person that gets told what to do by every Tom, Dick and Harry."

Does that mean she is a big fish in a little pond and a perhaps a popstar in New Zealand?

"I don't really know what I am here. I just do my stuff and people, if they want me to be a popstar they can, I don't really think about those kind of things.

"There's nothing more to say really, buy my album."


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