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August 7, 2017 | by  | in Music |
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Ohney

Ohney is the solo project of Auckland-based musician Leith Towers. Farewell Lester Square is the second four track album Leith has released this year, following Sweet Aromas which came out in April. Musically, both records are tricky to define, blending elements of electronic music, jazz, folk, and indie rock, all with a very proggy and creative mentality. I asked Leith where this sound was coming from, to which he replied “It wasn’t coming from anything specific, I’d just moved out of a flat that was heavily EDM-centric so my listening’s been all over the show.”

According to Leith, the recording of the first album Sweet Aromas was all over the place.Parts of that album were just voice memos I recorded. Then my computer crashed so I only had the memos I’d dumped in my drive. Then I dumped them into my flatmate’s Logic and played with them until I finished something I thought was pretty interesting. A lot of the drums on Sweet Aromas was done with acoustic drums recorded on phones. It was the ugliest recording method, that whole project.”

The latest album Farewell Lester Square came about when Wellington-based artist (and friend of Leith) Matt Pogson (aka Jim Essef) told Leith he was keen to mix some of his songs.“So I recorded them quickly as I could on my flatmate’s computer while he was at work. They were quite rough, it was all guitar pieces I had, and I fleshed them out into the full songs. Then I Mana bussed down to Wellington and spent a week hanging out with Matt and mixing the songs. A couple of the tracks were written for my old band and never made the cut like “The Kind of Thing I Usually Lie About”. But I added some synthesizess and stuff, and it was helpful not having other people to worry about (like in a band) so I could play with the time signatures a bit more.”

I asked Leith why he has released the two Ohney projects so close together and as four track pieces rather than as a whole album.They weren’t really planned too stringently. They’re just things I’ve done in a year that’s been a bit of a tricky patch in terms of finding out what kind of music I wanna make. Trying to ease away from indie rock and that kind of thing. I wasn’t really too concerned about having a nice clean release. It’s been a learning experience more than anything else.”

In regards to what we can expect next and whether or not we can expect to see Ohney live Leith explains: “It’ll probably stay a recording thing, I’m gonna do one more by the end of the year. The next ones are a lot more acoustic guitar and organ based, bordering on folky kind of tunes. When I’m at that stage of wanting to have my own band again I’ll have it with my own name and stuff on it, but right now I’m happy playing in a few groups.”

 

Look out for Leith playing in bands like Dirty Pixels, Jim Essef, and an upcoming Auckland prog-pop project, but for now check out Ohney’s music at ohney.bandcamp.com.

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