Daniel O'Sullivan - Veld

July 13th 2017
(CD Album Review)

*****
A beautiful work of art


I was really excited when I heard that Daniel O'Sullivan was doing a full length album. I loved his work with Mothlite, Grumbling Fur, Sunn o))) and Ulver. I think Mothlite was the project I most identified with, and I was lucky enough to catch some of the bands earlier shows. At these shows Daniel O'Sullivan took on many faces and disguises, so what did he have in store for us this time on this release. 

The cover is very modern, like contemporary oil painting, layered oil painting onto his face. It's like an experience of synaesthesia, the music is dancing across the artists' face in waves of morphing colours. The artist has a melancholy and sadness, and the music is lifting everything up with the depictions of the lyrics and melodies. So if you can imagine what the album is like in colours, then the cover says it all.

Their is a complexity about Daniel O'Sullivan's music, and the influences of his life. From the Cocteau Twins to Psychedelia and World music. Like the Celtic haunting epic soundtrack vibe of opener 'The Pendulum'. To the distant sadness of 'Scorpio rising Blues', that gives hints of Indian music and the 60's Psychedelic sound of the later work of The Beatles. This track like 'The Swimmer', also seem to have elements of what he did with the album 'Dark Age' which he did with his project Mothlite. 

Which I have to say is actually in my top ten albums of all time. 'The Swimmer' is a very strong track, lead by off beat drumming and off beat bass. A style that first came to light in the 60's and was adapted in the 80's and 90's in Jazz and Jazz Fusion. This mixed with Daniel's vocal harmonies, is a melting pot of sounds... which are strange and beautiful at the same time. What I most like about Daniel O'Sullivan's work is you never know what to expect, and the fact he has the ability to mix things up and surprise you when he goes into other genres. Without these tracks feeling out of place on the record. 

On 'The Many are We' he goes to a more acoustic Folk base, where his 70's to 80's style of writing and telling a story could only be compared to the legendary Nick Drake. And back with the instrumental sound of 'Doe a Deer', you can kind of hear a connection with this artist and the fact on 'Veld' he is trying to set a scene. This fantasy World is strengthened with one of the best songs on the album 'Hc Svnt Dracones', which is layered with magic and makes you see that Daniel could possible be one of the most influential artists of this decade.

You get taken into a repetitive mind warp on 'Apocryphonium', which has hints of what he did with Sunn o))) and Ulver. But at the same time staying new and fresh. You can see on 'Veld' that Daniel O'Sullivan could be doing his most personal record to date. The musicianship on 'Veld' is second to none, like the guitar sound on 'Luminous Fibres' which is like nothing I have ever heard before. 

'Sabotage Devices' again goes back to the sound of the 80's and is similar to tracks on 'Dark Age'. I have to say this is one of my favourites. Like on songs on the Mothlite album, this takes influences from acts like Tears for Fears and the Electronic sound of the 80's. Sunk into a deep depression and melancholy state, before being brought up and then taken down by the sadness and brilliant simplicity of 'Be honour You'. 

'Veld' is fourteen tracks long and he ends the album quietly and instrumentally with a soundscape of sounds and ideas that come from the mind of a genius. These are so good to hear late in the evening and when your on the wind down to a brilliant by tiring night out. I think that 'Veld' could be Daniel O'Sullivan masterpiece, you can see that he put so much time and energy into it. I also think it will be an album, I will be listening to for years to come and still finding something new every time.

Review by Dan Devour

Listen! to the Track 'Hc Svnt Dracones' Below...

Share