Bristol-based producer obylx has announced the release of his third full-length album, Out Of The Woods on the 1st of December via his own Guise Records. The final track for this year and the album is ‘Alright’, marking 3 years of obylx releasing a new song on the first day of each and every month. This cautiously optimistic song completes the journey that began in a bedroom in 2018 with no plan, no hype, no budget.
Out Of The Woods signifies the end of obylx “hiding in the shadows” and an evolution in his songwriting. Opening up about his personal struggle through the loss of his father, himself a songwriter, each track is a vessel carrying heartfelt lyrics, contrasting emotions, longing and resolution. Together they reflect on a process of introspection and healing, something deeply personal yet relatable, as a tumultuous 2020 draws to a close.
Speaking of Out of the Woods, obylx tells us: “This year I have been exploring other areas in my life, be it the ending (‘Take Me’) and starting of relationships (‘Alright’), solitude (‘Day By Day’), conflict (‘The Leech’) and good times (‘Skin’). I have also started writing from other’s perspectives -‘Another Life’ being the clearest example. I feel like it has been a year that has concluded my wandering and has led me out of my metaphorical forest. I have learned how to deal with grief and turn it into a driving force. At the start of the project I deliberately left space so that I could grow into it. I have reached that place and now ready to ‘Walk On’ into next year.”
Although the obylx project was born out of loss, Johnson’s dedication to – and belief in – the craft he inherited has led to continued and growing success. Oliver Johnson’s story is a beacon of hope in a time when the UK’s music sector and independent creatives face immeasurable losses due to the effects of the national lockdown, making it clear that the sustainability of the creative sector is not only “viable”, but essential to our collective well-being.
Influenced by the likes of David Bowie, Grandaddy, Radiohead, Phillip Glass, and Randy Newman, obylx navigates deftly between obscurantism and downright pop sensibilities. His playful yet deeply emotional and intricate sound finds company alongside the likes of Jungle, Tame Impala, with nods to Flume, MGMT and 20Syl.