Oh. — is the moniker of the Greek multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer Olivia Hadjiioannou*. Oh. announced her arrival to the international music community in 2013 with a 24-minute debut EP, “Sleeping World”. “Trials”—a song about the struggles of her ‘lost generation’ won an international music video award. The song was selected by the Greek press as one of the top-50 events to mark Greece during the economic crisis.
“Sleeping World’ also caused a stir in the international music press. Reviewers compared her vocal talents to stars like Kate Bush, Tori Amos, Happy Rhodes, Céline Dion, Melissa Auf der Maur, Sharon Den Adel and Anneke Van Giesbergen.
In 2015, she followed up with a 34-minute instrumental progressive metal concept album “Synemotion” as a Double Limited-Edition vinyl release.
Between 2016 to 2018 Oh. released four successful single-ballads about love (“Love Will Heal”, “Love of Avalanches”, “I’m In Love” and “Deserted Eyes”). The music video for “Love of Avalanches” was one of the first handmade 360 virtual reality (VR) videos on YouTube. The innovative workflow to produce the video was showcased at NAB in 2016 by Mettle. A 3D WebGL interactive experience for the launch of the single “I’m in Love” was nominated on Awwwards.com in 2017. And finally, “Deserted Eyes” won four international music video awards, most recently in the London Greek Film Festival in 2018.
Her new EP “Metallia” was released on July 28, 2018 as a luxuriously designed digipack-CD with a 16-page booklet. The EP includes 6 new tracks with a total duration of just over 25 minutes. Since it launched it has received over 32 reviews from 13 countries worldwide, is in the top 10 Prog EPs on Progarchives and listed as one of the best albums of the year for 2018 on Metal Nation Radio.
One reviewer said, “if you put Kate Bush, Auf Der Maur, Ayreon, Chiasmata, Igorrr, old White Zombie and Amogh Symphony in a blender with several metronomes running different time signatures, add a healthy dash of thrash riffs to the proggy mix and baked the resulting mixture for several hours you probably wouldn’t even come close to the sound.”
Frenetic harmonic guitar solos, sultry multi-layered harmonic vocals, ecstatic head-banging riffs, fantastical violins, grooving bass lines and furious drums paint the myriad and intricate sonic landscapes of Oh.
Oh. plays guitar (electric and acoustic), bass, drums, violin, piano and percussion composes, performs, produces, mixes and masters in Athens, Greece.
Sultry multi-layered harmonic vocals leading to frenetic harmonic guitar solos, ecstatic head-banging riffs, fantastical violins, grooving bass lines and furious drums paint the myriad and intricate sonic landscapes of Oh.. She conjures up magic song potions of avant-garde ballads, prog metal instrumentals, symphonic prog rock tunes. Her guitars whisper of Satriani and Vai and her vocals, the timbre of Sharon Den Adel, Anneke Van Giesbergen and Tori Amos. Her music evokes intense imagery, entices the listener to journey into epic sonic landscapes and finally escape into intense ecstatic oblivion.
The real story about Oh. and her music is not disguised behind her moniker or cultivated in the place she was born. What drives her to play a half-dozen instruments or insist on mixing and mastering her own music isn’t revealed in a succession of external events — rather, driven by a passion to musically reveal an “inner-story”.
Yes, she calls herself Oh. because those are the initials of her real name Olivia Hadjiioannou *, – unpronounceable to most except other natives of Greece, where she was born.
And though, some hints as to why she became a musician can be found scattered in snapshots of instruments on her childhood wall. She says: “I never felt as if there were ever a question of whether I can play music or not, music is always a question of whether you have something to say.”
Her time in her studio is spent in crafting a sound, as she says. ‘epic enough’ to touch the soul, whether in the darkest recesses of sorrow or heights of elation.
Within those wild and thrashing guitars and ecstatic voices, there is a faint but powerful voice of hope — you are left transformed in a subtle way.
There is so much more to Oh., you just need to listen and listen carefully — because there are many twists and turns in her progressive rock and metal landscapes.
*For you radio DJs, click below to hear how to pronounce Olivia Hadjiioannou 🙂
Oh. released a debut progressive rock EP “Sleeping World” in 2013 with the award winning video “Trials – A Song for a Lost Generation”
The metal album and vinyl release, “Synemotion” in 2015
Two singles, “Love Will Heal” and “Love of Avalanches” in 2016 – one of the first Greek artists to create a 360° virtual reality video without a 360° camera.
A single ballad, “I’m in Love” was released in 2017 with a WebGL online experience which was nominated by Awwwards.com.
The last of the single ballad series, “Deserted Eyes” was released on January 19, 2018 with an animated music video and innovative WebGL experience. The song is was a semi-finalist in the 2017 International Songwriters Competition (ISC) and the music video was the winner of the Cosmocinema Awards for Best Music Video Award in the London Greek Film Festival, an official selection in the 13th Athens Animfest 2018, winner for Best Video Art in the Five Continents International Film Festival and Official Selection in the Experimental Dance & Music Film Festival.
A progressive metal EP, “Metallia” was released July 27 2018. The music video for the song “Red Lion” from the album is an Official Selection in the Paleochora Lost World Short Film Festival, Semi-Finalist in the Indie Visions Film Festival, winner in the Independent Talents International Film Festival, Semi-finalist in Light Future International Film Festival, Official Selection in the Cosmocinema Film Festival and participant in the Lift-Off Sessions.
Oh. is currently in the studio working on the progressive rock album, “Prog Unshaven” coming out in Spring 2019.
• Oh.’s debut EP Sleeping World released in February 2013. The music video for the title track “Trials – a song for a lost generation” won an international video contest
• Oh. was added into Prog Archives into the Crossover Prog category.
• The song “Trials” was considered one of the top 50 influential events that marked Greece in 2013.
• Honored the developers of the Mettle Skybox Suite reposted the unique workflow used to create a 360° virtual reality video without a 360° camera on their Skybox Studio blog – invited to present the workflow at NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) – for the music video, “Love of Avalanches” in 2016. mentioned in Huffington Post (Greece).
• A 3D WebGL interactive experience for the launch of the single “I’m in Love” was nominated on Awwwards.com for site of the day in 2017.
• Semi-finalist in the 2017 International Songwriters Competition (ISC).
• “Deserted Eyes” music video selected in the 13th Athens Animfest 2018.
• “Deserted Eyes” music video selected in the Experimental Film, Dance and Music Festival
• “Deserted Eyes” music video winner best video art in the Five Continents International Film Festival 2018
• “Deserted Eyes” music video winner of the International Cosmocinema Award for Best Music Video in the 11th London Greek Film Festival 2018
• Official Selection in the Paleochora Lost World Short Film Festival
• Semi-Finalist in the Indie Visions Film Festival
• Winner in the Independent Talents International Film Festival
• Semi-Finalist in the Light Future International Film Festival
• Official Selection in the Cosmocinema Film Festival
• Participant in the Lift-Off Sessions
Reviewers have compared her voice to Sharon Den Adel and Anneke Van Giesbergen, others to Happy Rhodes and a cross between Kate bush, Tori Amos, Melissa Auf der Maur, and Eivør. They emphasized her quite unique style, as one said, “she defies analysis somewhat as Queensryche” with distinctive sound of her own. Elements of bands like Sacrilege, Black Sabbath’s “Zero the Hero” period and a bit of Exciter have been mentioned in various commentaries.
So, what does it actually sound like then? Well, in short I can’t say if you like ‘x’ band you will love this as there really is a lot of influence and styles melded in to its 25 minute run time yet I can say that if you put Kate Bush, Auf Der Maur, Ayreon, Chiasmata, Igorrr, old White Zombie and Amogh Symphony in a blender with serveral metronomes running different time signatures, add a healthy dash of thrash riffs to the proggy mix and baked the resulting mixture for several hours you probably wouldnt even come close to the sound…did that help? Nope? OK then check this out ~ Lee Davidson – Prog Metal Madness
Oh. is a multi-instrumentalist (guitar (electric and acoustic), bass, drums, violin, piano and percussion) who composes, performs, produces, mixes and masters her own music from her studio in Athens, Greece.