Obi - Gripped By The Power of Song
POSTED: SEPTEMBER 2ND, 2002
Some line-ups are meant to be. Obi founders Damian Katkhuda (vocals) and Dom Hazlehurst (guitar) parted in 1999, but Hazelhurst accidentally caught Katkhuda's solo set two years later, and convinced him to try again. Such is the power of song, which in Obi's case is what constitues their present magic. Eight deceptively simple, utterly charming, guitar-strumming tunes waft across, at times Go-Betweens style (Home On The Range) or Nick Drake-like (After Thought). But lyrically and emotionally, Obi lack the quirks of either, or indeed anything that might snag (though there should be a law against titling a song Somewhere Nicer). What they have are exquisite details - Somewhere Nicer's entwined steel guitar-harmonica pulse, All The Stars' bedazzled demeanour, Piano Song's English-riverbank dreaminess. A melodic masterclass, in fact.