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Carla Werner

Country of origin:

New Zealand

Type of music generally:

Ethereal pop/rock


Most recent release, My Lover's Ghost (2010)

See also:

Carla Werner's site

Wikipedia's entry on Carla Werner


Heather Nova; vocally like a clearer Sarah Blasko

Covers/own material:


General comments:

A local girl with a guitar and a remarkable, jazz-tinged voice. (

Recommended first album:




Release info:

2003—Columbia—CK 86866



Ecto priority:

Highly recommended

Group members:

Carla Werner—vocal, acoustic, electric, and effect guitar

Guest artists:

Ged Lynch—drums (1, 2, 9, 10); percussion (2, 9, 10)
Mike Hunter—bass (1, 2, 9, 10)
Ken Nelson—e-bow and acoustic guitar (1); ambient guitar (2); guitar effects (7); additional electric guitar (9); piano (10)
Paul Mannion—electric guitar (2, 9, 10)
Lucius Borich—drums (3, 5, 6, 7, 8); percussion, bass (3); stab guitar (7)
Flynn Gower—electric guitar (3)
Emerson Swinford— e-bow guitar and 12-string guitars (3); electric guitar (3, 5, 6, 8); acoustic guitar (6)
Jamie Muhoberac—Wurlitzer (3, 8), delay synthesizer (3); keys/pads (5); moog/pads (6); Rhodes, synth (8)
Dario Bartolin—bass (4, 5)
Larry Muhoberac—string arrangement, conducting (4, 5)
Phillip Hartl, Askar Nurlanov, Fiona Ziegler, Alex D'Elia, Martin Silverton, Scott Stiles, Rachel Westwood—violins (4, 5)
Anne-Louise Comerford, Sandro Costantino—violas (4, 5)
Andy Hines, Adrian Wallis—cellos (4, 5)
Tim Cooper—electric guitar (5, 8)
Chris Bruce—bass, guitar effects (6)
Joel Shearer—guitar effects (6)
Carmen Rizzo—programming (6)
Sam Dixon—bass (7)
Rob Wolf—Rhodes (7)
Ben Rosen—bass (8)
Mark Phythian—pump organ (10)
Gary Burke—drums (11)
John Holbrook—moog bass, spaghetti western guitar, bloogle (11)
Dan Goodwin—electric guitar effects (11)
John Platania—diamond acoustic (11)
Mike Hannah—sample string arrangement (11)

Produced by:

Ken Nelson (1, 2, 7, 9, 10); Carla Werner (1–3, 5–11); Lucius Borich (3, 7); Carmen Rizzo (3–6, 8); John Holbrook (11)


Carla Werner [is] the best new artist I've heard since The White Stripes five years ago. Her new album, Departure, is an outstanding debut, which will have you recalling traces of Jeff Buckley, Heather Nova, and perhaps Kate Bush. And although she's a New Zealander, her output is essentially Brit-rock. The strongest songs on the album are "Heaven Is A Word," "Wanderlust," and "Make It Up" each produced by Ken Nelson of Coldplay fame. Prog trance enthusiasts might also recognize her name from Paul Oakenfold's album Bunkka where she provided vocals on the best track on the album, "Southern Sun." (

Gentle guitar songs with a fluttering voice, shelved in at my local store, but only because that's where they put pop music for grown-ups. Werner's easy way of singing—gliding across her melodies—gives the album a charming lazy feeling. There are many catchy tunes, maybe nothing sharp enough for a hit, though 'Wanderlust', 'Heaven is a word' and 'Make it up' could do it. The songs that diverge are refreshing—Departure has uncommonly crunchy guitars to go with her soaring voice, and atmospheric closer 'Iodine red' features a Middle Eastern touch to her wail, alongside guitar sounds similar to whale calls.
     Whenever I listen to Departure, I'm amazed by how good and accomplished and nice it is. I wouldn't react like that if I really really liked it—I've got some distance from it. (

A gorgeous album that floats along on the strength of Carla's voice. Some people have criticized it for being same-y, but I don't think it is. The variations between the songs are subtle, however. (JoAnn Whetsell)

My Lover's Ghost

Release info:

2010—Of One Music—OOM 002



Ecto priority:

Highly recommended

Group members:

Carla Werner—vocals, guitar

Guest artists:

Joshua Grange—bass, banjo, bass guitar, pedal steel guitar, piano accordion, pianos & baritone guitar
Anthony Zimmitti—drums
Johnny Moezzi—acoustic guitar


Features a light and folky sound rather than the sonic lushness of Carla's debut album Departure. Carla's voice is as gorgeous as ever, I often find myself listening to this EP several times in a row. Hard to believe this is a collection of misfit songs culled from her upcoming release. (JoAnn Whetsell)

Thanks to JoAnn Whetsell for work on this entry.

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Artists from
New Zealand

6 entries

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Julia Darling

Daphne Lawless

Sophie Moleta

Bic Runga

Vostok Lake

Carla Werner

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DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.

Entry last updated 2016-06-23 14:25:13.
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