After the successful 2012 e.p. ‘Oh Love’ and The Audience Wildcard grant win for their single ‘Little Darling’, Auckland folk/pop band Paper Cranes release their debut album The Road Home this Friday, March 20th. 

I got a sneak preview of the album, and it is every bit worth the wait we’ve had since their last offering. They delicately walk the path between folk and pop, with a couple of the tracks perhaps diving a little too deep in the pop world, but the album needs these songs to complete it. Songs like ‘Every Part of Me’, ‘Trouble Is’ and the traditional ‘In the Pines’ highlight the beauty that Paper Cranes have to offer to the folk world. 
Male / female harmonies are found aplenty from Fraser and Naomi Browne, something I have always loved and we seem to be spoilt with in Auckland. Surrounding this are a diverse array of instruments including shakuhachi, ocarina, accordion and harmonica. My favourite moments are the sparse songs that are filled with Fraser on piano stringing haunting tales that weave Naomi’s Japanese heritage with his own love of lyrical poetry. 

My favourite Nirvana song is their version of the traditional song ‘In the Pines’ done as ‘Where did you Sleep Last Night’ and every time I hear another artist perform it I can’t help but compare it that track off MTV Unplugged. I am sad I have never heard Paper Cranes perform it live because it would make any concert one of the best I have seen. Truly a beautiful rendition of this traditional song. 

Mixed, recorded and produced by Nic Manders, who is the mastermind behind the Edge Kingsland collaborations, and was behind the desk for Lydia Cole’s Me and Moon and Luke Thompson’s single Water, The Road Home has been masterfully done. This album deserves attention and a long ponder on each each song. 

The album is released this Friday 20th March and Paper Cranes celebrate the release with a performance at Lewis Eady, 75 Great South Road, at 7.30pm. You can buy presales here for $10 including a copy of the new album, or it will be $15 for a CD with free entry at the door. 

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