OCA - Ageing
Just the sweetest journey through breathy, warm ambient electronic music. This record reminds me specifically of Yasuaki Shimizu's Music for Commercials. Not specifically because of the textures, timbres or phrasing, but because of it's mood, brevity and light. It's not so ambient you don't notice it, it's definitely for listening, but also, it's a digital age, an age of change and flux. Just a wonderful set of miniature would-be stories. 10/10
Berlin based duo OCA present Aging, their sophomore album and first for Métron Records. Following up last year's Preset Music (recently featured in Kelela's Aquaphoria mix) Aging is an album that focuses on memory, experience and the passing of time.
A collaboration between producers Yo van Lenz and Florian T M Zeisig, OCA formed after the pair met and became friends while studying in Berlin. Originally from small towns in Bavaria, the duo now live and work in the German capital.
Through a series of 10 vignettes, Aging transports the listener on a trip across a series of life events that retain a special personal importance to both of the artists. These emotional touchstones range from the profound to the prosaic - the discovery of something new, the relief from annoyance or the familiarity found in an old companion - and have been fully explored with playful sonic introspection.
Whilst the concept retains a certain ambiguity, it is the sound palette, created solely on an Alesis QS6 synthesiser - that brings these experiences to life. OCA blend and weave classic dance music motifs with shimmering synths, Japanese wet ambient, and even anthemic 80s rock to create a soundscape rich with texture and sensation.
The bass notes and tentative lead of ‘Baby’s First Blade of Grass’ reference the memory of first consciously or subconsciously experiencing something new, whilst the decaying ripples of ‘Stretching in Water’ paired with sounds of flowing streams conjure up images of tranquil pools. Their most developed work to date, Aging showcases OCA as rising stars of progressive pop and modern ambient.