Click here to return to the main site.

Music Review

Book Cover



Artist: Shapeshifter
Mums the Word Records
RRP: £15.99
Available 01 December 2008

Based in Christchurch, New Zealand, Shapeshifter is a six piece band who have, over the last five years, re-written the rule book for dance acts in that part of the world. They have released three consecutive number one independent albums on their own label, True Tone Recordings, headlined every major festival across their region and officially become New Zealand’s biggest grossing and most successful touring act of all time...

Shapshifter's platinum status has seen them collaborate with Fat Freddy’s Drop and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, supporting rock act Tool on tour and scoop no less than three awards at the NZ BNET Music Awards for 'Best Album', 'Song of the Year' and 'Best Live Act'.

Following on from their Real Time, Riddim Wise and Shapeshifter Live LP’s, Soulstice is their most recent album, which obtained platinum sales status in New Zealand in three weeks and features vocals from some of New Zealand’s top artists. This is Shapeshifter's first UK release and takes in influences from the worlds of soul, reggae, funk, rock and of course drum and base.

Soulstice is produced on two CD’s with 15 songs in total. I don’t see a need for two CD’s and it’s a bit clumsy when having to change CD’s over, especially in this day and age where everything is becoming smaller and more compact.

CD 1 has the most chilled out tracks on it. They seem to start slow, chilled out with dreamy vocals then after a couple of minutes lead into Shapeshifter’s identity of drum and base.

Tracks 4 and 7 on CD 1 ('Bring Change' and 'Southern Lights') seemed incredibly familiar - but I couldn't quite place where I'd heard them before. These are also probably the best tracks on the first CD.

CD 2 is more hardcore drum and base. The tracks are faster, darker and feature more dance. Having said that, track 3, ‘One’, although fast paced and loaded with drum and base, features the slow chords of a piano being played over the track. On paper, the mix of drum and base with piano chords shouldn’t go together but it actually works really well and this is probably one of my favourite tracks on the album.

Out of the 2 CD’s, on balance CD 1 was my favourite. I enjoyed how the tracks were chilled out, smoother and more soulful than CD2. Having said that Shapeshifter are all about their diversity, mixing different music genre’s together and I can’t say that there is a track I really disliked on either CD.


Helena Rea

Buy this item online

We compare prices online so you get the cheapest deal
Click on the logo of the desired store below to purchase this item.

£11.99 (
£12.99 (
£6.59 (
MP3 album
£17.00 (
Australian Import
£10.99 (

All prices correct at time of going to press.