Kua wetea taku mokonaha E kore au e noho puku anō
My muzzle has been loosened I will never sit in silence again
Two of Aotearoa’s most enigmatic and exciting artists have joined forces to release one of the most powerful songs you are likely to hear this year.
Alt-pop queen Theia and rising hip-hop sensation Vayne have today dropped ‘CREEP’ – an unapologetic bilingual waiata, which delivers a cutting message to sexual predators.
The hard-hitting bass-heavy ‘call to arms’ was written at APRA’s inaugural Reo Māori Songhubs curated by Grammy-winning NZ producer Joel Little and held at Waimarama in late 2020.
Meeting for the first time at Songhubs, Theia (Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Tiipaa) and Vayne (Ngāti Raukawa, Ngā Puhi, Ngāti Porou) immediately hit it off and emerged from the studio with the highly charged ‘CREEP’, which seamlessly weaves between English and Reo Māori, reaching a spine-tingling crescendo with a passion-fueled haka.
In ‘CREEP’, Theia and Vayne nod to their own personal experiences and trauma in dealing with sexual harassment and abuse and also acknowledge the many others who have been harmed and continue to be harmed by the actions of predatory people.
“‘CREEP’ is about calling out those who lurk in the shadows; those who prey on the vulnerable and who are often protected by the silence of those around them,” says Theia. “You know that ‘creepy uncle’ whose actions people laugh off but never act upon. We want them to know – there’s nowhere to hide!”
“I only speak on behalf of myself and my own experiences, but if I am to say anything, I will say that we have to stop letting these cycles continue. We have to stop letting people abuse their positions of power, we have to stop silencing our children, we have to stop expecting only women to resolve these situations. Men need to have these conversations amongst other men. We have to amplify victims’ voices not silence them. We have to speak up in the moment, we have to stop brushing shit under the rug!” says Vayne.
In releasing the track. Theia and Vayne also draw attention to the trauma inflicted by systemic sexism within the New Zealand music industry, which serves to oppress and harm the many wonderful wāhine, rangatahi and the LGBTQIA+ community, who are a part of our rich musical landscape. They stand in solidarity with those who have bravely shared their stories.
Theia and Vayne share co-writing credits with Jeremy Tātere MacLeod and Rory Noble, who also produced ‘CREEP’.
Theia makes unapologetic alt-pop, which pushes boundaries both sonically and lyrically. Since emerging in 2016, she has gone on to amass a loyal fanbase across the globe, receiving critical acclaim from the likes of Pigeons & Planes, Clash and Billboard Magazine, which recently described Theia as “one of the most exciting voices in pop to emerge from New Zealand in the last five years”. She is fluent in te reo Māori and also has a reo project called TE KAAHU.
Vayne is one of the fastest rising voices of Aotearoa hip-hop today. Since its July 2020 release, her debut EP GUTTA GIRL has spread like wildfire. Teaming up with Montell2099, LMC and Church Leon, the glowing rapper’s debut is a nod to the Gutta Girl in all of us. Having grown a notorious following from packing out K Road venues, to performing at The Others Way, FOMO and opening for Six60, Vayne season is on.