Welcome all to 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿, a series of weekly reviews by Charles Connolly - an artist in his own right. Here, Charles delves into the greatest brand new singles brought to you by the best unsigned artists on our electrifying and eclectic set of 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝘼𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙩 𝙎𝙥𝙤𝙩𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 playlists.
Charles remembers that life is for living.
I rarely go into the topic of the virus. Very rarely. Many reasons. It can be boring. It IS pretty boring. It can be lowering. We are all sick to death of reading about it. Maybe “sick to death” is a poor choice of expressions, in the circumstance… I just wanted to get something off my chest, as it were. It’s about cycles. Neither of the bi- variety nor the menstrual kind, however to a certain extent it does involve the cycle of life - but not as we know it. When we speak of the cycle of life, we are really speaking of life and death; the being and the not being. I am not so interested in the not being, for there is nothing much to discuss there. The idea I had in mind is more in the way of cycles throughout our living. This time last year, things were very grim indeed. A vaccine had been approved, but it was not yet available to the general public. We waited with bated breath for the clock to tick past midnight, into a completely different year altogether. Good riddance to nasty 2020, and good morning fresh, golden ray of sunshine, 2021. To quote our festive friend: “Ho Ho Ho”. It did make me chuckle; the cynical, sadistic bastard that I am. The soiled cycle of the old year was complete, and the shiny, cling-film covered new one was just to be unwrapped. What joy! Santa is by this point joining me, rolling on the floor, laughing. ROFLing, I believe is the term these days. Well it wasn’t much of a change, was it. There was hope, however. We had a vaccine soon to keep us company. It can only be a good thing. But close to a year on, less than two thirds of London is vaccinated. Bravo! Variants came and went throughout the year. Many people became terrified and worried, regularly. Another variant means it is a journalist’s duty to terrify and worry. Spiffing! Every time we had a new variant, the press (and the people) would discuss whether it was particularly dangerous, and whether it would be immune to our sainted various vaccines. Immune to immunity! Who woulda thunk. We all so casually speak of science these days, not knowing the slightest thing about it. We are not scientists. Neither is the press. So we bring in the experts. They are very good at arguing with one another, and at being wrong. Eventually, even the journalists get bored of writing about the same stuff, and move on to something much more important. Like Prince Harry. Pahahaha! Santa’s having a grand old time now. So do we ever find out if various variants were able to beat the vaccine and win over our souls…? Nope. By this point, it is old news.
The latest “trend” in Britain is yet another variant. It is called Omicron. Or as Boris insists on pronouncing it, “Omnicrom”. I personally like to call it: “Oh Mycroft!”, as Sherlock exclaims when tired of his lazy brother’s wasted brilliance. Whoop-whoop! Another variant around which journalists can wrap page after page of nothing. Oh what joy. We have stone-cold evidence that “Oh Mycroft!” spreads very easily. We also have stone-cold evidence that it has little to no serious effect on people. The Times informed me of something a couple of days ago. 18 older people (aged 60-75) - all of whom having been fully vaccinated - got together for a 60th birthday party. No doubt a cocaine-fuelled den of half-naked animals, dancing the night away to acid house music. Or not. It turns out that 14 of those 18 whippersnappers caught the variant. So this is proof surely that it is a major issue…? Nope. They apparently had “cold-like symptoms” like coughs, runny noses, sore throats, and get this quote: “feeling a bit under the weather”. And apparently ALL of them completely recovered within 3 days. The Times then proceeds to suggest that the “Oh Mycroft!” variant “may well kill thousands”, based on the information I have just relayed. Right! Interesting conclusion. So why react to it…? Because it’s what we do. Correction: it is what government has learnt to do. Last Christmas, I knew from the start, that the very next day, they’d take it away. This year, to save me from tears…… They’d bloody well take it away again??! No no no. Last Christmas was sad, but the decisions made were utterly understandable and probably the right thing to do. This time around, things are very different indeed, and yet we are back on the same old cycle of doom and gloom.
This is where we are. I spoke of cycles (no bicycle spoke jokes, please). This is our constant cycle. Lockdown and strict regulation, loosening of regulations and easing in of “normal life”, new variant, back to crap. Rinse and Repeat (to quote NAS member, Liz from Bad Scullianz). My point is that we cannot cower from something that is no more harmful than a common cold. Many might disagree - which is utterly fine! I should think though that most will agree. I see no end in this constant cycle. I personally want OUT. But whichever attitude and opinion you hold, you do not have a choice in the matter. We do but try to voice an opinion, to our friends, family, all over social media (if you can be bothered). But we are ignored. Always. We had a choice and a say over Brexit - Lord knows why (we are neither scientists nor politicians). But no matter how much we talk and despair, we are simply ignored. Sanity and logic are routinely ignored. Even statistics and facts are ignored. It seems the government’s motto might be “Do as we do”. But then they’d probably ignore that too. If ignorance is bliss, they’re really taking the-, Mick.
On this note of ignorance, I turn to something altogether lighter and more uplifting: Music. “Oh Lord, I thought he’d NEVER get to it. Words, words, words. That’s all he ever writes”. True! Words are indeed all I ever write (I occasionally doodle in the margin). Time for a tune. Oghamyst and Hano have written and produced their latest single, aptly titled, Ignored. What with only Oghamyst being a member of the New Artist Spotlight, I thought I would put the emphasis on the lad rather than the lass. Oghamyst is Soumyajit Guha. A thoroughly lovely chap from Calcutta (or Kolkata, as they spell it). Not only is he a member of this wonderful society of ours, but he has been a moderator (mod, for short) for almost as long as I. Speaking of Mods, it warms me that mopeds have always been as popular in India as they are in London. They also drink just as much tea as we do - or so I’m told. Indians, not mopeds. Oghamyst also sports the classic mane of thick, dark, shiny hair that young Indians are oh-so lucky to possess. Seething envy. Throughout all this time of knowing each other, I am ashamed to say that I have never reviewed him. This is not because he is no good, but because he was “finding his feet”. I was waiting for him to settle into his preferred sound signature and make “the one”. Like the best artists however, he will never stop changing and reinventing himself. I never REALLY want artists to “settle” into anything - there lies a dormant artist. But Oghamyst likes to dabble in all KINDS of styles. He is known for being a prolific artist, sometimes releasing even 2 singles a month! I need to maybe take a leaf out of his book…
The song takes us with a driven music-box hammered bell melody. Hano vocally brings us forward as a second synth plays a counter melody. There is the feeling of presence yet distance. Something so clear yet so full of despair. Our beat creates a solid tempo as we sink into a pre-chorus with a grounding bassline. Then a very unusual thing takes place as we slide into the chorus. The bass drops out entirely! I don’t know if I have ever known this from a chorus, in the history of pop music. And it works wonders! Hano croons of being ignored, and the lack of bass emphasises the fragility and unknowing in that feeling. A brief instrumental interlude of smooth reverb-laden guitar lines, serves almost as a build-up to Hano’s incredible plethora of melodies yet to come. The chords become more haunting and the whole piece somehow achieves a cooler atmosphere. The song swells and heaves to and fro, with its relatively simple instrumentation tightly weaving a web of wonder. Our hi-hats get excited by this. Don’t yours? Oghamyst is a budding young producer who has come such a long way in a year or so. I have found myself playing this song on repeat, as it touches me in an unusual way. That melancholy dream that takes you elsewhere. Seemingly to have filled a void, maybe caused by being ignored? Who knows. Maybe ignorance IS bliss? Who knows.
So we are collectively ignored. Maybe just as well. What do WE know…?
Oh Mycroft! Wherefore art thou??
Listen to 𝙄𝙜𝙣𝙤𝙧𝙚𝙙 on the 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿 Spotify playlist HERE!
Listen to 𝙄𝙜𝙣𝙤𝙧𝙚𝙙 on the 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿 Apple Music playlist HERE!
Follow 𝙊𝙜𝙝𝙖𝙢𝙮𝙨𝙩 on Instagram HERE!
Follow 𝙃𝙖𝙣𝙤 on Instagram HERE!
Please share this post and let me know your thoughts in the comments below, or on Facebook HERE!