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Lorde sings Māori versions of Solar Power songs on new EP

09 September 2021, 10:27 | Written by Cerys Kenneally

Lorde has released a new EP titled Te Ao Mārama, which sees her sing five tracks from her Solar Power album in Māori, the indigenous language of New Zealand.

Following the release of Solar Power last month, Lorde has released Te Ao Mārama, a five-track EP of Māori versions of songs from her latest record, translated by Hana Mereraiha and featuring backing vocals from Māori singers.

Proceeds from the EP will be donated to New Zealand-based charities Forest and Bird and the Te Hua Kawariki Charitable Trust.

The EP features Māori versions of "The Path", "Solar Power", "Stoned at the Nail Salon", "Fallen Fruit" and "Oceanic Feeling". Pitchfork reports that Lorde said of the EP in a newsletter, "Many things revealed themselves slowly to me while I was making this album, but the main realisation by far was that much of my value system around caring for and listening to the natural world comes from traditional Māori principles. There’s a word for it in te reo: kaitiakitanga, meaning ‘guardianship or caregiving for the sky, sea and land'."

Lorde continued, "I’m not Māori, but all New Zealanders grow up with elements of this worldview. Te ao Māori and tikanga Māori are a big part of why people who aren’t from here intuit our country to be kind of ‘magical,’ I think. I know I’m someone who represents New Zealand globally in a way, and in making an album about where I’m from, it was important to me to be able to say: this makes us who we are down here. It’s also just a crazy beautiful language - I loved singing in it. Even if you don’t understand te reo, I think you’ll get a kick out of how elegant my words sound in it. Hana’s translations for "Te Ara Tika / The Path" and "Hine-i-te-Awatea / Oceanic Feeling" in particular take my g-d breath away."

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