When the stress of everyday life seems to get too much, Melbourne producer Mayari has the power to soothe your soul and captivate your senses with her debut EP ‘Womb.’
Released in December 2023, ‘Womb’ is a seven track EP written, produced, engineered and mixed by Mayari.
We're a little bit late in dropping a review on this one, but it's been holding our attention since it's release and it's far too good to let slip under the radar.
With the single releases ‘Palawan Beach,’ ‘Closure’, ‘Fever Dream’ and 'Womb', Mayari clearly draws inspiration from Jon Hopkins and his musical process on the album Music for Psychedelic Therapy. Her music evokes and explores the energy of the land through natural sounds and, just like Hopkins, makes every track sound like a place.
This makes Mayari's music feel like she's taking you with her on a personal, spiritual journey through her life. From healing to renewal, through to the discovery and exploration of her culture, it's certainly an album you can attune your daily yoga routine to.
Take 'Palawan Beach' - the more you listen to a song like ‘Palawan Beach,’ the more you're drawn in. From the moment this track begins your mind is transported to a beach party on a tropical island, cocktail in hand. A sense of transcendence is created by the ethereal sounds of the waves layered with her angelic voice, all carried along by seamless bass and synth transitions.
From here, this album demonstrates a range of swings in pace that parallel shifts in mood, sliding from peaceful to frantic, yet always comforting.
‘Womb,’ the EP's lead single, is an energetic, infectious dance song that is destined to be a hit at the club. As you listen, you 'll find yourself entering another reality. It has a Doctor Who vibe about it, with hints of speed garage and William Orbit influence. It is fast paced with a powerful bass, lengthy, drawn-out synth loops, and a mesmerising vocal loop overtone, instantly making you feel like you are floating in space.
‘Womb Heal 285hz’, on the other hand, is a lower key track with calming vocals. It's an intriguing listen, production-wise, since Mayari uses so many different elements in this song. It combines live recordings of birds and streams from her iPhone, as well as audio recordings of her and her family, as if you are watching an old film. This creates a Zen-like atmosphere, soothing the mind and transporting you to a pleasanter time for families as you take in the peace and quiet of the forest.
There is also a skillful use of ethereal vocals and the blending of natural sounds with traditional Filipino instruments, like the Gandingan, a set of four large hanging gongs, and the Kubing, a bamboo jaw harp, among others. This helps immerse the listener in the soundscape of the Philippines, creating a mental image of the place and culture that Mayari is so familiar with.
This comes through strongly in the song 'Lola', which begins with the sound of pan pipes, echoing gongs and cymbals, setting a strong tone of melancholy. When you listen, you feel like you're entering a temple or house of worship with incense burning and people bowing down to pray. A sense of loss and longing permeates the song, but then halfway through the track it takes you by surprise and changes up the tempo with intense drumbeats and guitar riffs taking over the song and giving it a more contemporary feel and dramatic mood.
'Fever Dream' is another intriguing track that features a variety of traditional instruments. The sound of gongs features heavily, which gives it a distinct, anxious sound. When combined with the chanting vocals, it creates an impression of becoming entrapped in an unpredictable, unstable situation. While listening, I related this feeling to a similar track from Bicep called ‘Lido.’
Mayari is undeniably a multi-talented artist. She has experience in film and television production, as well as music creation. She's even an acting school graduate. When she first began her career as Ali Adriano, she caught Triple J's notice and airplay. Nick Littlemore of Empire of the Sun chose her as the winner of Triple J's songwriting competition back in 2021, and she's only continued to develop her talents since then.
In 2023, Mayari saw a chance to put the knowledge of her previous studies to use and go it alone, taking on the moniker Mayari, a Filipino goddess of the moon that stands for bravery, strength and the spirit of an unwavering fighter.
She is an artist that merits our full attention because of the way she pushes boundaries and combines musical styles. With this EP, Mayari is sure to live up to the name she has adopted and make an impression on the music industry.
'Womb' is out now.
Want us to review your track(s)? Get in touch with us via the contact page.
About the Author
Debra Sherwood is a Freelance Journalist. Having obtained a Bachelors Degree in Communications/Journalism in 2018. She has been working at honing her skills being a contributing writer for various publications and worked with the Games News Service at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. This has also helped broaden her knowledge base of other industries, but her true passion has always been music. She wants to share her passion for music through her words and hopes that this helps artists prosper in their occupation of making music. When she is not writing about music, she is immersing herself in it, attending live shows and is not afraid to tackle any musical genre. She believes that everyone has a voice to be heard.