Pelagic Records

Oh Hiroshima • All Things Shining [LP]

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All Things Shining by Oh Hiroshima on vinyl (Memorabilia ed.). This is a Pelagic Records release. 

Sweden’s stalwart, slow burning post-rock outfit OH HIROSHIMA return to champion wonder and awe in an age of faded youth and jaded disenchantment. ‘All Things Shining’, the band’s fifth studio album, sees the project pared down to a brotherly core as they expand ever further into new sonic territories.

BIO

Founded over 15 years ago as a DIY post-rock recording project in Kristinehamn, Oh Hiroshima has steadily outgrown its Swedish hometown to become a highly regarded studio and live project within the international post-rock scene. With four diverse full-length albums to their name encompassing elements of shoegaze, electronica, post-punk and danceable indie-rock, Oh Hiroshima’s forthcoming fifth release, ‘All Things Shining’, represents a significant evolution in the band’s songwriting and soundcrafting.

Started by Leif Eliasson and quickly joined by Jakob Hemström, who brought his brother Oskar Nilsson in on drums for the band’s 2011 debut album ‘Resistance is Futile’, the band eventually swelled to a four piece for 2015’s breakthrough record ‘In Silence We Yearn’, which earnt Oh Hiroshima a significant and loyal fanbase through YouTube and led to the physical re-release of both albums through Napalm Records.

Throughout the process of writing, recording and touring their subsequent albums, 2019’s ‘Oscillation’ and 2022’s critically acclaimed ‘Myriad’, the band gradually boiled down to brothers Jakob and Oskar as they continued to develop their songwriting and production skills.

With ‘Myriad’ a brooding kaleidoscope of thunderous drums, reverberating guitar feedback and ethereal synth sounds courtesy of Kristian Karlsson (Cult of Luna, pg.lost, Soars), ‘All Things Shining’ is Oh Hiroshima refining this complex sound further still. Already renowned for their command of panoramic, compositional atmospherics, this new collection of songs consciously leaves space for singer and guitarist Jakob’s lyrics and vocal delivery and brings a striking yet delicate tenderness to Oh Hiroshima’s formidable sonic palette.

Working again with Karlsson as keyboard player and co-producer, as well as fellow Cult of Luna member Magnus Linberg who mixed and mastered ‘Myriad’ too,  the brothers embraced the challenge of their lineup change as a way to push themselves into uncharted creative space, to make the best of their tight knit bond. As such, ‘All Things Shining’ wrestles with questions surrounding purpose, meaning and a generational ambivalence spreading across Western society.

Wasting no time, opening track and lead single ‘Wild Iris’ gets straight to the point as the band’s most urgent and insistent work to date. A driving, half-time groove introduces Jakob’s seemingly innocuous opening line of “My friends are ordinary” before it’s turned into a cautionary tale against mediocrity by the resounding refrain of “It’s been way too long since lightning struck right through you” that brings with it a reinvigorated wave of Oh Hiroshima’s thunderous post-rock prowess.

Elsewhere, the more traditional song structure and taut, krautrock sound of ‘Secret Youth’ belies a power battle at the song’s heart between the naive radicalism of youth and the distanced, calculated reasoning of adulthood, whilst ‘Deluge’ explores this dichotomy by juxtaposing orchestral influence with strict minimalism and electronic abrasion with acoustic warmth, as lyrics inspired by Nobel prize-winning author Pär Lagerkvist question the fine line between right and wrong, good and evil.

A musical reflection on the trajectory of their lives to date, on how our wonder at the world seems so much harder to attain these days, ‘All Things Shining’ is another significant milestone in Oh Hiroshima’s journey. Simultaneously personal and universal, the album serves as a sonic exploration of the duplicitous nature of ageing; the double edged sword of amassing life-affirming experiences that inevitably dim our perception of the world around us. However, as the title suggests, Oh Hiroshima are adamant that all is not lost; with songs inspired by timeless works of literature pivotal for Jakob and Oskar throughout their lives, ‘All Things Shining’ is a reminder that, against all odds, the world will always find a way to reclaim its spark and mystique.

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