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INTERVIEW: Opiuo Talks Red Rocks Syzygy Orchestra, Collabs With Lettuce & DeVotchKa Members

first_imgOn April 21st, the progressive New Zealand electronic producer Opiuo (also known as Oscar Davey-Wraight) headed to the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre for a sold-out, co-headlining show with Colorado’s own SunSquabi. After 2017’s performance with the Opiuo Live Band, the boundary-pushing producer was ready to take it up a notch, with the show serving of the debut of his Syzygy Orchestra, which draws its name from Opiuo’s most recent EP, Syzygy 01.With this monumental performance behind him, Live For Live Music got the chance to talk to Opiuo about the performance, the work that went in ahead of time to make it all happen, plans for the future, collaborations with members of Lettuce, and more. You can check out the interview below, and head to Opiuo’s website for more information and future tour dates.Ming Lee Newcomb: Recently, you headlined the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre. For your show, you brought together a 20-piece orchestra, dubbed the Syzygy Orchestra, and performed with them. Can you talk a little bit about what inspired this wild collaboration?Opiuo: I’ve been a massive fan of orchestras my whole life. It’s a realm of musical creation I had no idea about, so I thought why not take on the challenge, especially somewhere as special as Red Rocks. The mix of century-old organicness with brand-new electronic power, I was so intrigued.MLN: Once you realized that you wanted to move forward with the collaboration, you handpicked an orchestra to work with specifically for the show. What was that process like of choosing the Syzygy Orchestra?Opiuo: I worked alongside the concertmaster, Tom Hagerman, and chose the most impactful instruments for a show like this. Ones that work together at a size of twenty people, allowing us to replicate and reinvent electronic sound in a beautifully organic way. It was super fun. It was like creating my own movie soundtrack. The instruments just jumped from the pages!MLN: You worked with one of the members of DeVotchKa to score the show. How did that process work, and how did you decide which songs you’d perform at Red Rocks? Were there any songs you knew you wanted to do from the get-go, or any songs you wanted to do but ultimately didn’t translate well?Opiuo: I was introduced to Tom [Hagerman] via my manager. We spoke on the phone, then I flew to Denver to sit and meet in person. It’s very important for projects like this to work with people I connect with on a personal and musical level—and Tom was exactly that. We gelled right away. I had already been working on the show for some time, so I had arranged the music into a coherent set.I definitely spent weeks working out which songs to play, and even asked my fans online, without giving too much away. I knew it’s super important to get it right. And yeah, some songs I would have loved to play, but they did not translate that well. Then, me and Tom spent months sending the files and music back and forth until we were both happy with the final product. It was such an enjoyable and interesting experience.MLN: What was the transition like, shifting from the role of a lone DJ on stage to the conductor of twenty or so people?Opiuo: The transition was surreal. It kind of felt like it was something I had done before. It felt natural, even though the show flew by, and I didn’t really remember many specifics. I was so focused on doing the role I had to and doing it well. It was super refreshing to be up there, performing in a completely different manner. I loved it.Opiuo with the Syzygy Orchestra – Red Rocks Amphitheatre[Video: OPIUO]MLN: Now that the show has passed, what were your favorite moments from your Red Rocks performance?Opiuo: When we finished the 4th Movement, the crowd was nearly completely silent. They seemed to all be emerged deep in the sound and in the moment. Then seconds later they erupted into screams and cheers. It’s moments like those that you know everyone is paying attention and along for the ride, right there with you. It felt very special.MLN: Ahead of the Red Rocks show, you released a brand-new EP called Syzygy 01. Given that you’ve always been such a boundary-pushing producer, how do you think your sound has evolved with this latest album?Opiuo: I went on some journeys to places like New Orleans and recorded real horn sections. I’d often been a sampling guy, but going there and experiencing a place like that had a huge impact on the music. It was so much fun to watch songs come to life before my eyes.MLN: On this new EP, you also worked with members of Lettuce. Can you talk about those collaborations, and what it was like working them?Opiuo: Benny Bloom from Lettuce, Russ Liquid, and TJ Norris are absolute pros! They smashed the role of horn-section extraordinaires. We recorded five songs in four hours. I was so lucky and fortunate to have them lace my music with style and grace. Something I want to do more of in the future.MLN: Given the name of your new EP, can we expect a Syzygy 02 coming out soon? Or can you share anything about new music you might be working on?Opiuo: You might be onto something here… That’s all I will say right now!MLN: Having just finished up an extensive North American tour and an incredibly busy start to 2018, what are your plans for the rest of the year. Any shows or festival sets that you’re really looking forward to?Opiuo: I’m excited to spend the middle part for the year bouncing around the globe making people dance to my funkadelic adventures. Lots of new music, and a special project which I shall announce in due time. Plus, I just try to be the best human I possibly can every day, encourage everyone to follow their dreams, to believe in themselves, support their friends, and to spread positive vibes far and wide!For more information on Opiou’s upcoming projects and performances, head to his website.last_img read more

Bony spurred on by Drogba

first_img Bony has arguably been Swansea’s most influential performer this season, and he will be critical to helping them collect the points they need to be safe from relegation. There could be few bigger games than Chelsea’s Liberty Stadium visit on Sunday for him to showcase his talent. “I think as players you always want to play in big games,” Bony said. “For me, being a big player means playing in the big games. I have 12 league goals and just five more (league) games left. Getting 20 league goals would be nice. I want to score more. “If you play bad people criticise you, if you score a hat-trick people sing your name, but the main thing is to stay yourself, do what you know and let other people talk. “We have five more games and I will try to do my best and we’ll see what will happen. “I have three years left on my contract at Swansea, we have five games left and then the World Cup and we will see what happens. What is more important is the final (league) position we have, and Sunday especially.” Wilfried Bony has set his sights on shooting down Barclays Premier League title contenders Chelsea this weekend – with possibly a little help from Stamford Bridge legend Dider Drogba. The fellow Ivorians are good friends, and Chelsea know they will need to keep Swansea striker Bony in check following his prolific form this season which has seen him amass 20 goals in all competitions. “I have not spoken to him (Drogba) yet, but maybe tonight or tomorrow I will,” Bony said. “We are playing against Chelsea, so he can tell me some things. “He is my friend, we are in touch, so I will talk to him for some advice. “I followed Chelsea when Didier was there. He was always with the national side, so we would see how they were doing. “I saw the Champions League final against Bayern Munich. It was fabulous for him in his last game with Chelsea. Chelsea are a big club in the Ivory Coast, and he did well with the national side, too, so he is a big personality there.” Former Chelsea hero Drogba has given Bony an insight into Blues manager Jose Mourinho, who remains on course to achieve a possible Premier League and Champions League double this term. “He told me he is a very good manager and that he is all about winning,” Bony added. “Sometimes they play well or sometimes they play bad, but the most important thing is to take the three points and then talk about what you can work on. “If you don’t win, that is not the point. That is the winning character he has.” Press Associationlast_img read more

Mbarara lose again as Maroons take care of Paidha

first_imgMbarara have now lost both of their last two League games (file photo)StarTimes Uganda Premier League Tuesday, 26-02-2019-Kirinya JSS 2-1 Mbarara City -Maroons FC 3-0 Paidha Black AngelsMbarara City lost their second successive match as they were beaten 2-1 away to Kirinya JSS on Tuesday.The Ankole Lions who at some point were talking about winning the League, were behind early in the game as Joel Madodndo scored his 11th goal of the season inside the first two minutes.Eight minutes later, George Kasonko made it 2-0 to sturn the visitors further.Goals were flying in at the start and Mbarara who came into the game off a 2-1 home loss against Onduparaka, also got in on the act through Pistis Barenge, scoring what would later turn out to be a consolation, on 17 minutes.After the breath taking start, both sides settled down for the rest of the half to see Kirinya go into the break leading 2-1.In the second, Mbarara went all out in search of an equalizer but were undone by Kirinya who saw out the game to register only a second victory under interim coach Abby Kikomeko.The win for Kirinya sees them climb into 10th on the standings with 27 points from 21 games.For Mbarara, they remain third on the log with 36 points, 9 behind leaders KCCA FC.At Luzira, Maroons brought Paidha Black Angels back to earth, defeating the Arua based side 3-0 on the day.Going into the game having been dragged into the relegation dog fight, the home side knew that they needed to respond as sson as possible.Despite intense pressure in the first half, the Prison side failed to break down Paidha’s defence and they went into the break at 0-0.Four minutes into the second half, Rashid Agau opened the scoring for Maroons with his 5th of the season.With 14 minutes to play, Pius Obuya converted from the spot to double Maroons’ lead and put them on course to a very important victory.With Paidha looking dejected, Bronson Nsubuga added a third on 84 minutes to ensure Maroons register their biggest victory of the season so far.Victory for Maroons sees them move six points clear of Ndejje University, who occupy the third and final spot in the relegation zone. The Prison side have now accumulated 22 points from 21 games.For Paidha who headed into the fixture off a 2-0 win against Nyemiyobora, they remain at the bottom of the standings with 12 points from 21 games.The other games played on Tuesday:-Onduparaka FC 0-0 Vipers SC-KCCA FC 0-0 URA FC-Ndejje University FC 0-1 Express FCComments Tags: toplast_img read more