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March 4, 2022 REVIEW: Classical composer Olovson shares exuberant album Storytelling

REVIEW: Classical composer Olovson shares exuberant album Storytelling

               Image credit: Eliot Lee Hazel

Emerging artist Olovson has finally released his long-awaited album Storytelling via 1136 Diamond. Olovson is the moniker of part Grammy Award winning musician Jacob Olofsson.  The album features the familiar track ‘Labyrinter’ which calls to mind early silent films with its whimsical, inviting yet mysterious tone throughout. This is the ideal track to reminiscence with or just enjoy as is with its comforting mood.

Stream/ Download: Storytelling LP

‘En Mi Lado’ is a gentle yet lively track with cascading piano notes that divert toward a more playful direction. A track for all the children at heart that can appreciate a classical tune or two.

‘Ruth’ surprised me the most, it’s one of the most toe-tapping tracks I have heard in a while in terms of classical sounds. Other acoustics collide with the signature piano structure to create this exhilarating track – brilliant.The final track ‘Leaving Home’ creates an equilibrium of sadness and joy with its instrumental dips and rises, which definitely sums up the feeling of leaving the nest. 

In conclusion, this album is an exuberant listening experience for young and old souls looking for a listening oasis to absorb themselves in for as long as needed.

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February 16, 2022 Interview with classical composer Sven Helbig

Interview with classical composer Sven Helbig

Image credit: Sven Helbig

Sharing his new album Skills, German composer Sven Helbig gave us a taste of what to expect with the release of the album track ‘Metamorphosis’ ahead of the official release. Drenched in passionate violin arrangements, this classical track carries a tense but intriguing atmosphere nonetheless. The musician shares that this album was inspired by people around him, exercising their abilities to create new and wonderful things. Also featured on the album, is the noteworthy track ‘Flow’, which takes a more adventurous route with its blend of electronica, string instruments, and ambient embellishments. Today we present an exclusive Q&A with the composer below.

Describe your sound for us. What do you want people to feel when they hear your music?

My sound consists of classical instruments in synthesis with subtle electronics. For the new album, I used French horns and tuba beside a string quartet. I can’t say what people should feel. I am transmitting energy and I hope it finds some receivers.

Which 3 artists have influenced you the most growing up?

John Tavener for his deep spiritual composing, the drummer Questlove for the incredible joy he pours into my body with a simple 2 and 4 in their right places, and Stevie Wonder for everything.

How did you discover your particular sound?

I always loved the musical waves that an orchestra or classical instruments, in general, can produce. This is very different from any other sound source, and I wanted to work with this type of musical energy.

Tell us about one of the first struggles you faced (as a group or a solo artist) and how you overcame it?

It took me a long time to see sense in making my own music, after growing up with the masters and their complex perfection. Do we need more music? That doesn’t matter! Am I good enough? That doesn’t matter either. It sounds simple but finding those two answers was incredibly hard for me.

What are the most important pieces of equipment to you?

For creation: My brain, my intuition, a pencil, and paper. 

On stage: I couldn’t live with a laptop.

Music for the individual or the masses – which do you want to create?

I can’t answer this. It is a typical western-world-21st-century-question. There is a difference between whether by “for the masses” you mean the audience of Johann Sebastian Bach, or that of McDonald’s. Bach’s music was created for the masses and still is accessible for everybody. I wouldn’t make music that is only limited to a few individuals.

Do you have a favourite memory of your career so far?

Yes. The most touching moments have been the after-shows with my choir project. When a choir of St. Petersburg or Minsk or Cuba is singing folk songs for you, in a pub after the concert, that is incredibly moving.

If you could work with, or perform alongside any artist living or passed, who would it be?

I would very much like to collaborate with Ryuji Sakamoto. His work was with me for so long and it would be a dream to write something with him.

What kind of message are you trying to send with your music?

My music is made to make it easier to stand up again. I want to share energy for this. Every one of my projects is written in search of leaving a foggy time and finding a new way out.

What can we expect from you in the near future? Any upcoming projects or gigs in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?

I am looking forward to performing my new album Skills live. Especially being invited by the London Contemporary Orchestra to perform with them at Southbank Centre makes me very excited.

Skills track ‘Flow’ features on the Spotify playlist

Follow Sven Helbig:

Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Soundcloud

August 27, 2021 Music producer Olovson explores the inner child with ‘Gyroscope music video

Music producer Olovson explores the inner child with ‘Gyroscope music video

                                                  Image credit: Eliot Hazel

Leaving the mind on overdrive with abstract mental images of faraway lands and destinations, music producer Olovson continues to keep us hooked on his minimal sound. Today he has shared quirky visuals to accompany his latest single ‘Gyroscope’. The music video is animated by multi-talented creative Gabriel Böhmer, who also animated the music video for Olovson track ‘Books Are Flying’. Read the full feature about the ‘Books Are Flying’ video here.

Stream / Download ‘Gyroscope’

Olovson is the alias of renowned music producer and collaborator Jacob Oloffson who is well-known for his work with more commercial acts like Dua Lipa and Camila Cabello. He also forms part of the Grammy-award winning duo Jarami. The Olovson moniker has given Jacob the creative room to explore his talent for composing more mellow and ambient sounds with tracks like ‘Gyroscope’ and this video is icing on the cake for the inner child to consume.

Olovson shared that the video was supposed to be about a young mind hungry for adventure. He finds adventure by exploring past inventions in his grandparent’s basement. Olovson finds inspiration for his music in the simple pleasures of life and the endless possibilities the mind can create when you let it flourish with new and old knowledge.

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Interview with singer/songwriter Jessica Victoria

New Mexico-born songstress Jessica Victoria defies convention at every stage, exploiting both her classical training and singer-songwriter credentials and finding lyrical and thematic influence from Arthurian mythic history! Jessica Victoria’s album “Songs of The Summer Realm” has a little something for everyone, transporting the listener to a different time and place while instilling ideas and ideals which remain incredibly relevant. 

Preceded by three exclusive tracks, ‘Wayfaring Stranger’; ‘Love Charm’ and ‘Some Songs are for Crying’, from classical to opera to Celtic folk to rock and pop, the musical journeys Jessica will take you on are as inspiring as they are magical.

See our interview with her below

What are some of your earliest memories of music?

Some of my earliest musical memories include listening to Beethoven symphonies with my uncle. He would give my brother and me a movement at a time to discover and enjoy, usually after taking us for a yummy lunch of Greek, Indian, or some other intriguing cuisine that we hadn’t experienced before. Another memory is of my brother and I performing shows for our grandparents from the lowered tail-gate of my grandpa’s truck. I remember afternoons when my dad and I would drive down the windswept New Mexico desert highway, listening to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Iron Maiden’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner.” At one point, my brother and sister and I had Les Miserables practically memorized. We’d each take on a few of the roles and go for it with the recording as a backing track. 

Take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when putting music together?

Sometimes, a song begins with a fragment of melody, sometimes with a lyric. I collect these ideas or, as songwriter Mark Simos calls them, “songseeds.” When the time is right, I plant one of these in my mind and let it begin to grow. In its first stages of development, I usually find inspiration at my harp, Merlin. Once the song has a little more shape, I take it to Logic, where I experiment with sounds and rhythmic patterns. Then, I lay down a scratch vocal track against this instrumental outline. Little by little, or sometimes quicker than I imagined, the song begins to take on its own reality, its own life. It lets me know what it needs. In some ways, my process reminds me of what J.R.R. Tolkien said when someone asked him about how he came up with Middle Earth and all of its people. He said something like, “I just discovered what was already there and wrote about it.” 

After the song has grown enough, I play it for people, so that I can get ideas and suggestions. As I tend to forget sometimes, I am not my audience. It’s important to step back and let the baby song try its independence. Then, I can help it change and grow so that it can finally be on its own in the world. 

Studio work and music creation or performing and interacting with a live audience, which do you prefer?

I love and thrive on both of these. The creative synergy of sharing music with an audience feeds my creativity and inspiration in the studio. The process of songwriting and collaboration inspires me to share the fruits of this work with a live audience. I have been called a firebrand on stage, but, in everyday life, I am a touch introverted, so it’s good to have both the inward and outward faces of my career. 

What is the most memorable response you have had to your music?

One time, I was singing and playing my harp in Central Park, and a little girl came by with her parents. I heard her ask “Is she a fairy? Is that a real harp?” It made my day! 

If you could put together a radio show, what kind of music would you play?

If I put together a radio show, I would follow the model of Fiona Ritchie and her Thistle and Shamrock, one of my favourite shows of all time. I would choose a theme for the day and play music of different bands and musicians that responded to it from different angles. 

Name five artists and their albums who would appear on your radio show

Five artists and their music that I would love to have on my show would be: Sir Simon Rattle conducting Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3, Rhiannon Giddens singing ‘Leaving Eden’ and music from her 2019 album “There is No Other”, the High Kings with music from their album “The High Kings” and from their 2020 tour, Carlos Nunez Nunoz jamming on the Gaeta and his other instruments, and Vicente Fernandez sharing his storytelling magic through whichever songs he would choose to sing. 

What would you like to achieve with your music? What does success look like to you?

For me, success means making a living by performing, touring, writing songs, recording, and collaborating with other musicians. It means serving others by doing what I love. 

One last thought to leave your fans with?

2020 will be an exciting year of beginnings — new singles and a full-length album. Please check out my website,, where you can sign up for updates on upcoming releases and other news.

Follow Jessica Victoria online 

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