As a crucial figure in the history of the thriving Irish dance scene, and a favorite of the When We Dip team since their early formation in Dublin, Ian O’Donovan is an artist innately connected to the XYZ label. Through an illustrious career, he’s presented his unique blend of uplifting productions on behemoths such as Bedrock and Drumcode. Ian’s sumptuous Mistral EP, as well as his appearance on our Blanche project and a remix of Budakid, have confirmed his role as a pillar of XYZ’s existence thus far. He’s an artist with a unique ability to capture diverse soundscapes, taking listeners from dark and ethereal to uplifting and groovy in effortless style. It’s a blend of influences and genres that is impossible to summarize in short form projects. Therefore, we are ecstatic to announce the pinnacle of O’Donovans tie to XYZ in the form of his upcoming Still Waters LP.
Full length albums play a unique role in electronic music. LP’s are often underutilized or overlooked, with artists prefering to release more regularly with smaller samples of production. For an artist like O’Donovan, long form collections such as 2017’s Early Tapes LP [Stripped Recordings] are imperative for giving full context to his artistic vision. Ian’s Still Water provides a refreshed insight into the Irishman’s studio character in 2020. As a label, albums also play a distinguished role. To sign an album requires an immense trust, respect, and admiration between label and artist. We are thrilled to present our first full length project with O’Donovan at the helm, showcasing the label’s belief in placing artists in the driver’s seat.
Although it’s difficult to summarize such a diverse and eclectic set of productions, Still Waters masterfully touches upon deep & melodic tones, while also propelling us into techno-oriented fields throughout the 12-track set. O’Donovan made his name crafting dark and vivacious techno productions throughout his career, and he pays homage to the harder forms of electronic music through tracks such as Astra and Nightdrive. With driving kicks and soaring melodies, these are aimed directly at peak moments on a dancefloor. In recent years, O’Donovan has shifted toward more melodic and euphoric styles of production, as is particularly evident with his recent presentations of XYZ. Deeper tones and melody-oriented arrangements command the bulk of Still Waters, creating a flow throughout the album that never tires. Early in the album, Run Deep and Sakura melt listeners with pristine quality, setting the vibe for the LP. The Aftermath bring electro elements into the fold, while Sentient City rest upon soaring classical strings. Ambient and downtempo soundscapes also play a key role on Still Waters, with tracks such as Landfall, Fallen Reign and World Away providing vital audible context through the album. Inquisitive and pensive moments are aplenty between the more groove-oriented numbers. Through the twelve productions on Still Waters, we are thrust into Ian O’Donovans command of electronic elements from across the spectrum. Touching upon reliable and timeless modes from years past, O’Donovan also showcases his ability to bring innovative and modern touches into his recent work. It’s an impressive and unpredictable assortment, and a perfect summary of O’Donovan as one of dance music’s most unique characters.
Ian O’Donovan – Still Waters LP – Stream/Download: http://hyperurl.co/StillWatersLP
Connect with XYZ – https://www.linktr.ee/wwd.xyz
Release Date: April 3, 2020