|Tunnel & Sea
Necessity is the mother of invention. Routinely, we are irritated by not having that we desire, or even require, frustrated by what is lacking. Creativity theorists would now most likely identify the frustration as a driving force for creative activity. OFRIN flips this notion on its head. What drives the Berlin-based Israeli is the creation of an absence. She offers her creativity to serve the art of omission. In doing so, she proves herself as a master of the art. Her new album "ORE" is defined by the lacking musical elements, causing tension and drive throughout. over the past few years artists have played into listener's expectations too much, OFRIN refuses to fall victim to that particular practice.
We only notice something is missing if initially we recognize something. OFRIN uses familiar pop tropes without shame and to great effect. The track "BEST REQUEST" could be referred to as a new form of EBM, something akin to disembodied Electronic Body Music, as contradictory as that may sound. Orchestral hits, filter progressions and saw-tooth bass create an unmistakable 80's sound that will warm the heart of every self-respecting old school waver. The lack of beats is what defines this piece, catching the listener off guard and causing a slight abstraction. This variant theme occurs throughout the entire album.
"DIRECTION ECLIPSE" is a dark ballad drenched in trip hop nostalgia and takes the best from the genre. And here is yet another contradiction: OFRIN achieves an orchestral grandeur without pathos. Her clear yet never predictable melody stands alone without any orchestral backing as it is forced into modesty, virtually intimate. OFRIN resists the temptation to overload the piece with strings, making it a dark delicate lullaby. We do get a 'proper' EBM track in the end with a slapping snare and metallic synth-bass. "SISYPHUS" is a captivating piece, cutting through a classic arrangement with triplet rhythms. OFRIN tirelessly builds up the track over and over but never gives us the satisfaction of resolving this build up. The hook never comes; we are left out in the open.
"STOP DISTA" starts out innocent and calm, only to lead us into madness. What starts as a dreamy acapella, ends up a in a fierce tribal rhythm. OFRIN even takes on the classic Ragamuffin style, opting for a bare bones approach of purely Vocals, throbbing synth and a noise brass groove. OFRIN uses simple arrangements to great effect, fooling us over and over again into a false sense of security before taking it all away.
OFRIN is the master of her own voice, not showing off any flourishes for the sake of it – exercising restraint at all times. She avoids the excessive use of expressive bel canto techniques in favor of unusual melodies. Her voice is cool and composed. Her vocals are confident and incisive - free of vanity.
OFRIN is both a musician and a video artist. She has created a multipart video production for her album "ORE", an approach which she developed with her last video music project "THE BRINGER". "ORE" tells an archetypal story about two opposing forces within the same universe. The narrative builds on astrophysical phenomena, linking the real universe to an imaginary one.
Label mate T.RAUMSCHMIERE is behind the outstanding production of her new album. "ORE" is OFRIN's fourth studio album.