Maggie Tra has dropped her sophomore album, ‘Very Vui’; a liberating release that takes listeners through her complicated but rich Vietnamese ancestry, available now via SYS Sister Sounds.
The album explores themes of abandonment, acceptance and an eventual celebration of her father’s home country, Vietnam. This sense of simple serenity is summed up in the phrase “Very Vui”, which translates to "very happy" in Vietnamese. Although the album can be a bit rough around the edges at certain times, the overall mood and atmosphere are undeniable.
Moving to and living in Vietnam served as a spiritual mood board for Maggie, and the album’s cross-pollination of dance, ambient and traditional cultural styles shines through heavily. The 12-tracker sees Maggie’s production reshape and re-contextualise her story, with each song forming a variety of perspectives and narrators.
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Speaking on the project, Maggie Tra told Mixmag Asia, “The album is me understanding my Vietnamese ancestry. It’s about accepting myself and that part of me. It’s a release of letting go of abandonment issues and embracing the person it’s made me become”.
The lead single 'Very Vui' starts us off with ethereal synths and field recordings, which soon give way to a gradual build of rhythmic percussion. Before long, it drops into a groove-heavy, infectious classic house song, intricately interwoven with vocal snippets from her father and authentic Vietnamese instrumentation.
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Maggie Tra is the engineer behind SYS Sister Sounds; a label and community built to empower and push women and non-binary people in the creative and music industry. The core aim of the organisation is to encourage and uplift women in the music industry through radio shows, workshops and interviews with women and non-binary people worldwide.
You can purchase Maggie Tra 'Very Vui' here.
Henry Cooper is a Writer at Mixmag Asia. Follow him on Instagram.