Music Review: “Asha,” AO Music

The world music group AO Music is back with another superb album of high-energy sounds and enlightening vocals. The group’s name – AO – means pure light or all colors in ancient Polynesian, and “light” and “colors” are good words to describe this music.

As always, the incomparable Miriam Stockley leads the vocals on nearly every track. AO co-producer Richard Gannaway contributes to several songs, along with the voices of children’s choirs from around the world.

In a bit of a departure from their recent albums, many of the songs on Asha are in English – like “Love Knows the Way,” “The Wildest Dream,” “Where in the New World,” and others. AO has liberally used vocalese for many of their songs in the past (vocalese: made-up phonetics, open to personal interpretation, that fit the rhythm of the music). While there are still vocalese lyrics to be heard on this album, many of the songs are in English, Zulu, Polynesian, Scottish Gaelic, or a blend of languages. Continue reading

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