Alien Weaponry reach for Te Whetū Maiangi award

By Tema Hemi

Māori thrash metal band Alien Weaponry is set to debut their new album, Tū this Friday. 

With their upcoming European tour next month the schoolboys from Waipū are celebrating their latest accolade, their inclusion as finalists in the Whetū Maiangi Category of the Matariki Awards.  

The young musicians have made an impact in the music industry with their fusion of Te Reo Māori and heavy metal.

Lewis Raharuhi deJong, lead guitarist for Alien Weaponry says, "We decided to call it Alien Weaponry because of District 9 - the movie.  And when we moved up to Northland I met Ethan at circus school, and he come over to my house one day and he could reach the end of the bass guitar so I said do you want to join our band?".

The boys are ecstatic to be nominated for a Matariki award. 

Dejong says, "Its really really cool and we're really stoked as and we like being recognised for what we do."

The group was formed in 2010.  Shay Wright, a nominee also in the same category says having great role models has helped him to develop his skills.

He also acknowledges the efforts of other nominees.

 "I look at people like Pania Newton, who's also been nominated, an alumni of our programme and it just reflects that we do have young people who are wanting to grasp skills, go out there, do something with it, lead full kaupapa and really show that as young Māori we can take on the world."

The 2018 Matariki Awards will be held on Saturday 14 July from 8.30pm at the Auckland Museum.