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Olivia HADJIIOANNOU, that’s it, I wrote it, now it will be OH for friends, in short OH just released her 3rd EP after other singles too, just to inflate a little her emerging discography. Time to tell you about this stratospheric lady who comes from nowhere or from another planet, that of metal-prog-fusion-trash-dream-haunting and not only! You’ll understand, I just loved her devilish production for its tracks and not for the cover which, although it is very beautiful, did not need that to keep you going!
So, to go with my convoluted methodical sense, I would say that I “fell in love” with this music that in a few notes gathered everything I could listen to in the great Bible of the PROG! We have short intros, I conceive but all different to ask the question of where we will go! Different themes to get lost in any search for dinosaur groups in which she may have bathed when she was young! A basic cyclothymic structure with a deafening bass and schizophrenic drums to keep you in going, and bouncy, playful guitars, with a changes of tempo not to let you go too far in the analysis,… and finally ethereal voices, coming from a siren’s rock, which disturbed me a lot at the very beginning, but which also allowed me at that moment to feel downright mesmerized, integrating them to the instruments.
As far as references are concerned, because I know that many people often wait to know “what it’s about”, I would say that OH has merged the genres from the 70s to today…to say it simply, but not that! I would especially say that SACRILEGE, BLACK SABBATH “Zero the Hero” period and a bit of EXCITER had at one time or another tickled her ears, but also some parts of PINK FLOYD for the unstructured or animal choruses! In fact, listening to this “progressive metal” EP will have the gift to transport you in a pure moment of happiness as the mantra albums of the 80s could do with overloop tracks purely pleasurably!
Regarding the tracks, “Red Lion” sets the tone with guitars in a metal vein with fast tempo and a distinctive Toumperleki, also time to get used to this singular voice and used like musical waves. “Bee” denotes by the flamenco intro of the most beautiful effect, quickly leading to a frantic flight of guitars joining these tenacious voices, guitars that seem to juggle notes and give several rhythms to this title. “Androgyny” begins with a dark-ethereal choir allowing the guitar playing to find their way in a raw and irregular way; we are on animal metal-prog with certain riffs like that of PAIN OF SALVATION likes between softness and brutality. We are then taken up by an intoxicating solo loop making us forget time. “Resurrection” where mournful beats call out from the intro, then the guitar goes to seek the melody to allow it to exploit a musical structure crescendo leading to a jouissive, orgasmic finale and thus in various variations. “Dragon’s Kiss” is a harder track to listen to with cyclothymic drums, metal guitars, breathtaking violins and again bewitching voices giving primal energy; the proposed images can come directly from the dark Scandinavian landscapes where elves and other dragons watch, and to believe that there are also some there in Greece. “Triumph” arrives just to conclude this ultra fast and too short CD: here in just over 3 minutes, the bass takes on a dark territory, the drums on a tempo where the time itself seems to slow down by its heavy and repetitive side, the guitar(s) brings several solos in convolution and even more baffling the supposed track of this track while the screaming, raging voices, close to delirium bring to the incomprehension of the ears! Yes, in less than half an hour, you are able to leave without any legal and illicit drugs in the musical firmament, where music reigns supreme and without distinction.
To close…this chapter, this is a real enjoyment this OH EP, the multi factorial PROG far from our dinosaurs of course, but with ultra-worked atmospheres leading to reflection, relaxation, wisdom or simply the explosion of ones most obscure senses, the most unspoken, in short a pure moment of enjoyment without putting your fingers in the socket.