MUSIC REVIEW - PACIFIC CURLS, Lincolnshire Rural and Community Touring, Swayfield Village Hall

Pacific Curls are Ora Barlow, Sarah Beattie and Kim Halliday.
Pacific Curls are Ora Barlow, Sarah Beattie and Kim Halliday.

The only familiarity Swayfield had with New Zealand before the visit of three-piece Pacific, Maori and Celtic fusion band Pacific Curls was rugby union and lamb.

But the village should be on bended knee, thanking John Stanley and Claire Redmond of Swayfield’s Ministry of Fun committee for bringing Pacific Curls, Kim Halliday, Ora Barlow and Sarah Beattie, to its village hall on Saturday.

Kim Halliday, Sarah Beattie & Ora Barlow of New Zealand Maori, Pacific and Celtic fusion group Pacific Curls.

Kim Halliday, Sarah Beattie & Ora Barlow of New Zealand Maori, Pacific and Celtic fusion group Pacific Curls.

The big surprise was how mainstream the trio’s cocktail of Scottish fiddle music, Maori customs and Pacific Island rhythms were to an audience expecting a much more unfamiliar brand of music.

That’s not to say the show followed a traditional folk, jazz blend related to groups such as Lindisfarne, Clannad and Runrig.

Swayfield villagers were introduced to exotic instruments such as the kalimba, known in Africa as a thumb-piano, stomp box, Taonga Puoro or Maori horn and other percussion instruments.

The closest Swayfield Village Hall got to being a taste of the Pacific in Lincolnshire was when several members of the audience demonstrated a Maori dance they learned at a workshop earlier in the day.

There were also songs sang in the traditional Maori language, Te Reo, including Poi Porotiti (Swing To and Fro) and Te Pounamu (The Island).

Even more Celtic songs like The Mussel Inn, written by Kim Halliday, Quendale Bay and You Funk Me, based on a song by Marvin Gaye, were sung with a noticeable New Zealand flavour.

It all served up to be a magical night with Pacific Curls.

During the show, Ora said: “Back home in New Zealand, music is part of everything so there’s quite an opening to different cultures.

“We really love to explore different ways of coming to meet with people through music, hence this Lincolnshire Rural and Community Touring idea.

“It’s not that surprising to know that musical cultures have fused together because, in New Zealand, we’ve had a big English and Scottish migration which is something people don’t recognise.

“Every culture has different facets and fazes so we try to leave space for us to explore how cultures can complement each other.”

Music Review by Winston Brown