Oisin Daly is one busy guy. Hailing from Ireland originally, and settling down here in Savannah, you can usually catch Oisin downtown doing any number of things involving music. Oisin can be seen playing guitar for his band Xulu Prophet on a pretty regular basis, playing laid back jams based around blues, funk, reggae, and rock. Xulu Prophet literally does a little bit of everything. It wouldn’t surprise me if I walked into one of their shows and they were playing some barn-burning country music. Like, I wouldn’t even flinch. It’s always been a pleasure to share the stage with these guys, and watch them grow over the years.
But there’s a whole different musical side to Oisin, and he has managed to make one hell of a mixtape/album out of it. The sounds on “OBAMABOT” are as varied and diverse as the band he plays in. And in some ways…even more so.
The focus here, is blending traditional instruments, with electronic music. Oisin has told me that some of these song ideas are new, and others date back years. So it’s safe to say that “OBAMABOT” has been in the making for a while.Over the years plenty of artists have attempted blending organic instruments with EDM . Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
“OBAMABOT” kicks off with some psychedelic electro dissonance, with a sample regarding technology, and how it affects us. It sets the tone for what youre about to get yourself into.
Everything kicks off with a elaborate track that builds, using drum and bass beats and an absolutely rocking bass line a la’ The Chemical Brothers or Crystal Method. Electric and Acoustic guitars compliment the mix. Like i said before, sometimes this kind of thing works, mixing organic instruments in, and sometimes it doesn’t. In this case it most certainly works! This will continue throughout the mix. The track ends with an awesome, off the wall, drum breakdown that makes for a great bookend to lead into the next track
I could sit here and talk about things track by track, but i wont. I would rather give a firm salute to the fact that Oisin manages to not follow any particular genre of electronica. He takes bits and pieces from everything. There are Trance beats, breaks, hints of Industrial, and some of my favorite moments are the down-tempo songs. In the down-tempo moments, there is either a firm melody, or a full on washout of atmospherics. Personally, I think this is where Oisin shines. The hard banging intro is great, but I thoroughly enjoy some of the lighter moments.
One of those moments happens at almost forty minutes into the mix, where Oisin blends guitars, with some amazing saxophone playing (played by Denton Schulz) . This is the stand-out track for me, and I actually found myself going back to that track over and over. It reminds me a lot of techno geniuses Orbital, or U.N.K.L.E
There’s some voice samples, which as a personal preference…I don’t care for. But they are used tastefully, and never to excess.
The production is top-notch. It would seem that Oisin is a pefectionnist when it comes to mixing and mastering his tracks. Ive listened to “OBAMABOT” on a regular stereo, and then put it to the test with my studio monitors. One of the most impressive things is Oisin’s ability to layer so many sounds, and it never sounds crowded or over-bearing. The cool thing about that, is that I notice something different upon each listen. Maybe a keyboard tracks wayyyy in the back that I didn’t hear before, or an arpeggiated lick that sits in the beat. This makes the re-listen value high. There is always something new to discover.
With all of that being said, “OBAMABOT” isnt going to be for everyone. It’s very eclectic, and lots of people just simply cannot appreciate instrumental music. I only have minor nit-picks regarding the album. Sometimes it becomes a little disjointed where i think it should flow together a little better.These moments are few and far between. But Like I said, a minor nit-pick.
Overall, this is a great effort. And to be really appreciated, I suggest you kick back with some headphones, and listen to it from top to bottom at least one good time.