Amosa has dedicated this latest effort to her Samoan heritage. “When writing my latest music, I really resonated with the idea of creating a sound that represents my background. I am the product of such a diverse concoction of elements, but I can’t deny the influence that my Polynesian roots have had on the young woman and artist that I have become,” Amosa said in a press release.
Kirrah Amosa has delivered a strong sense of identity on Island Way, dedicating the smooth R&B grooves to her background.
Throughout the album, it is clear Amosa possesses a strong sense of self-assurance. This lends itself to what is evidently a genuine desire to convey an appreciation for heritage. Something that, through writing, has sparked an even greater interest. “Creating this EP has sparked an even deeper desire to learn the history of my ancestors.”
The opening title track is a cheerful celebration of Amosa’s Polynesian upbringing. It’s a wholesome appreciation of her family’s values, of giving more than you have, even if it’s little more than a moment of time. Instrumentally, the track blends elements of modern R&B – a consistent thread throughout the album – and infuses them with more tropical sounds. Steel drums, percussion and off-beat electric guitars signify a firm nod to Amosa’s background.
With Your Body continues themes of empowering self-realisation, this time through a vent of frustration towards unreciprocated relationships. The song’s message delivers a brutal ultimatum to friends and lovers that parasitically take advantage of generosity. The track moves into a detailed but aggressive bridge, distinguished by a dense percussive section before moving into the final, soaring chorus.
Touch My Soul, meanwhile, offers a critique of the masculinity’s weakest and shallowest points. It makes a mockery of shameless exhibitions of wealth and material excess as attractive attributes. The song was inspired by an interaction with a young man that ticked all the surface-level boxes, but failed to offer anything of substance.
Album closer, Nothing On Me, is actually a remix of Amosa’s single from 2019. The story behind it is definitely a unique one, too. After a failed audition on The Voice, Amosa appeared as a tantrum-throwing child through the magic of editing. In response, she has delivered a scathing assessment of reality television. Ultimately, she confides in the tangible support surrounding her in her family and friends, bringing the themes of the album full-circle.
Island Way is a strong demonstration of personal growth and empowerment. It is aggressive, but measured and sensible, coming from a place of genuine confidence. If she remains on her current trajectory, Kirrah Amosa will barely have any reason to think about The Voice again.