CD Review: Amy Hanaialii and Kohala


Amy Hanaialii


(Ua Records)

It’s all about the family on this album, which Amy has filled with sentimental, feel-good songs paying tribute to her daughter, her grandmother and other loved ones. The mood is both nostalgic and over the top, with Matt Catingub lending his orchestral arranging talents, to varying effect. A languid take on the WWII-era standard “I Remember You?” Yes, please. A schmaltzy punchup of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Have You Ever Seen the Rain?” Not so much.


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Kohala Christmas

(Palm Records)


Put on this slack-key collection of holiday standards, and you’ll likely find yourself asleep under the Christmas tree. Kohala, the trio made up of Charles Michael Brotman, Rupert Tripp Jr. and Charlie Recaido, has succeeded in crafting the mellowest imaginable instrumental renditions of already peaceful songs such as “O Holy Night” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” But then, after all the stress of preparing for Christmas, you could probably use a nap.