Northern California songwriter and recording artist Gabriel Olin has released his debut album/EP ‘Here,’ inspired by the classic rock sound
Pushed and challenged by the unforgettable bands that influenced him, Olin has created an impressive set. Captivation and obsession with the Beatles heavily inspired his songwriting. “The Beatles did not create background music,” says Olin. “They had an eclectic approach to writing and recording music. It’s very rich.” Not only has Olin adopted this varied approach on ‘Here,’ but strains of the majestic groove of Led Zeppelin come through as well, as does the expansive sound and acerbic commentary of Pink Floyd. “My dream is to have someone feel the way I feel when I listen to ‘Abbey Road’ or ‘Dark Side of the Moon,’ which is a kind of wonder and rapture.
There is deep meaning behind every word and note on ‘Here,’ revealing an obsessive desire to ensure that every song is well recorded. New details pop out at each successive listening. The five song EP has a classic rock vibe that feels new at the same time. It is exciting to identify Olin’s various musical influences and the skill involved, yet it is a natural synthesis. This music is from the heart
Featured on ‘Here’ is “Someday,” a song that can be appreciated on different levels. At live shows, the Led Zeppelin inspired groove always gets the crowd moving to the beat. It has an infectious, catchy tune, but hidden behind this attractive presentation is profound lyrical meaning. When he sings, “You know a man is climbing up you know a man wants it all/He says he can’t get any higher until after the fall,” Olin expresses a man’s constant struggle between ambition and frustration, which is both universal and timeless. Despite its seemingly unwavering cynicism, the song has a feeling of exuberance and self-effacing humor that allows for the possibility of an underlying hope
The title song “Here” is a breezy, shiny, jangle-guitar ballad, which Olin states is “about being separated from the person you love.” “Here” is that sweet ache of wanting to reach out and hold on to someone close who is far away, enhanced by a simple sounding but sophisticated Beatlesque arrangement. Following “Someday” on the album, this tender, moving song shows the variety of Olin’s musical style, yet a wider sensibility that ties the album together, and an ability to express poetically issues that touch our daily lives
Thoughtful, evocative lyrics, memorable hooks and subtle musical details are constant throughout ‘Here,’ from the lost-love rocker “I’ll Be With You” to the dramatic, Pink Floyd-tinged metaphysical musings of “Riversong.” To Gabriel Olin, inspiration is both a talent and a responsibility. As he remarks, “I think my songs are my greatest gift, but I need to share them or they become a burden,” and he advises others to do the same. “If you have something to offer, something to say, never give up.www.gabrielolin.co