Melbourne based queer Māori musician Samuel Gaskin‘s track ‘RĀIN’, featuring The Merindas, is a mesmerising, enigmatic track filled with a sense of hope and yearning: statuesque and affecting. We are honoured to premiere today the video for this extraordinary track and it is simply stunning.
The video features rich luscious colours and close ups of Gaskin and First Nations duo The Merindas singing, interspersed with two First Nations dancers, creating a sense of intimacy and warmth. The immediacy of the perfomance is immersive and mesmerising, the sheer joy of performance – both singing and dancing – is highly infectious. You simply cannot look away from the beauty and passion on the screen.
A gospel-flavoured choral chant and an indelible pop melody that bursts open the heart of the coldest individual is accompanied with themes that celebrate empowerment and resilience:
Stronger than water (All Sing)
Rain Rain Rain Rain
Bring the rain on the fire (All Sing)
Rain Rain Rain Rain (Sam Sings)
The song and the performance are a celebration of two indigenous cultures from Aotearoa, New Zealand (Gaskin) and Te Whēnua Moemoeā (Land of the Dreamtime), Australia (The Merindas): proud, fierce, creative and bold. Kristel Kickett from The Merindas says:
The cultural exchange of us coming together & bringing a song to life is truly something magical and so special. I can feel our ancestors smiling.
Indeed, the song and accompanying video installs a sense of untrammeled and unbound joy. Candice Lorrae from The Melindas adds:
For me, the song RĀIN is about embracing power and strength in your most vulnerable moments. Water and Fire are such powerful elements; it’s truly an uplifting song when you’re feeling defeated.
The pinnacle of the track is hearing both Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander and Māori singing in Noongar language together as one.
The video serves to augment and enhance the power and magnificence of the track: it is glorious and euphoric with achingly beautiful performances – ingrained with a magnificent feeling of positivity and sheer joy. The video creates a sense of close pastoral comfort and ease: the indelible worship of the natural with the bare torsos expressive and direct staring straight into the camera, daring even the most cynical not to be moved:
An absolutely glorious paean to survival, resilience and expression and a ray of euphoric, golden sunshine during dark times: a veritable cinematic experience. The video was directed by Annelise Hickey and produced by BEAT ENTERTAINMENT & Majella Productions.
You can download/stream ‘RĀIN’ here.
Feature Photograph: Michelle Grace Hunder