OP is a three-track experimental project and the latest release from composer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist David Redmond. Actually, OP is a re-release of an older project of Redmond’s, five years after its debut.
Redmond’s musical expression on OP is intricate and nuanced. His music echoes experimental avant-garde, recalls sonorous film scores, and exudes musical sophistication. The EP is steeped in historical science, demonstrating Redmond’s curiosity and intelligence beyond music. Dedication, perseverance, and fascination are evoked in the grinding rhythms and ethereal piano melodies of OP, emotions fitting of the great inventors and thinkers from which the project takes its inspiration.
‘Copernicus,’ named after the revered astronomer who proposed the heliocentric model of the universe, opens with a graceful lead from a piano. It soon breaks down into a glitched circle of celestial voices and sounds ominously swirling around the listener. ‘HAL’ appeals to more primal senses, its rhythm-based melodies evoking the ‘organised sound’ of Vàrese. There is little sense of traditional structure in ‘HAL,’ but the piece shifts between disparate emotional states with ease. It simulates the feeling of stepping out of a crowded place onto a calm beach, and then shunts you into the far future where you are hounded by complex technology you cannot comprehend, bleeping and buzzing alarmingly. The illustrative nature of ‘HAL’ and its industrial, rhythmic underbelly are evocative of Hans Zimmer’s acclaimed soundtracks. Between Vàrese and Zimmer, it is clear that the OP project celebrates pioneers from all fields, music included.
The true brilliance of OP, however, lies in the final track, ‘Ibn Firnas.’ Named after the first man to fly, the song is a sound bath of sonic textures. From silky, synth flutes to rough vocal techniques akin to heavy metal, the profusion of Redmond’s influences are laid bare on ‘Ibn Firnas.’ A consistent, rhythmic heart pounds, demonstrating the magnitude of perseverance endured by great inventors and scientists throughout history. This beating pulse gives way to airy melodies and sublime vocals; an impeccable depiction of a “eureka!” moment. The rest of the track is underpinned by the same gritty determination as the opening, amplified by low, growling vocals. Additionally, the song alludes to the Greek myth of Icarus, the sole lyrics chanting “feathers falling down.” Perhaps self-doubt is oft to follow a eureka moment, and if so this is framed eloquently in ‘Ibn Firnas.’
OP will be re-released on Monday 17th August, and will be available to stream on Spotify. It marks Redmond’s return to solo composition and production, after several years spent focusing on collaborative projects such as alternative rock band LNT. You can keep up to date with David Redmond’s future releases on Facebook and Instagram.