Jonathon Casey is above all else the consummate professional musician and composer embroiling himself in many musically orientated assignments that are spread around television, the cinema and the recording studio. In fact when you start delving into his musically rich background it opens up a whole wealth of interesting television and cinematic projects the focal point of such enterprise being ‘Envision Sound’ the studio where his compositions are created and honed to perfection. That Jonathon was a past member of the David Cross Band is somehow equalled by the fact that he can often be spied sitting behind the keyboards at clubs and pubs in his home town of Dublin.
In addition to Jonathon’s exacting studio exploits he is also involved with his own three piece progressive rock band entitled “M-Opus ” A band who, if their actual output dictates, is a non-touring band having only released three albums since 1975. It is the latest album under scrutiny here, a massive 136min 28 track enterprise delivered much in the same style of ‘Ayreon’ with a whole host of guest artists performing in the storyline of this epic undertaking.
Generally, the album comprises of a series of interconnecting musical passages that are sandwiched between snippets of dialogue and various sound effects. All of these elements forming together to bring the conceptual story line to life in cinematic fashion. The music itself fluctuates greatly in style as it progresses between the various passages combining many different arrangements of rock music. There are included in the mix various elements of folk, pop and progressive rock inflections. Certainly, there is common melodic thread throughout each of the linking musical passages. The overall standard of musicianship is extremely high with beautifully executed keyboards, superb floating guitar, powerfully dominant bass lines and extraordinary driving drumming. The actual vocal styles are interesting too. The softly delivered vocals from Jonathan are indeed engaging with a charming Irish inflection and surprisingly in places an almost ‘Bowie’ sound. Some beautiful female vocals too grace the proceedings
From a negative angle though, there is a question about the frequency at which an album of this nature can be played over again without the ability to separate the dialogue from the music. Some past albums, such as ‘War of the Worlds’ for example work fine in this direction. I am not sure about ‘Origins’, hopefully it will work in the same way as such past classics. Certainly Jonathon’s vision of it being a cohesive, cinematic project that can be picked up and enjoyed just like novel, has merit particularly in these times when music can seem to be digitally disposable commodity.
Summary: A superb album of rock music entwined within an engaging story line and delivered in cinematic fashion.
Other Info from the press release :-5 years in the making, 135 minutes of music... a cast of actors and guest performers including Stella Bass, Sandii Jane Hyland, Anto Drennan, Conor McGouran, Michael Buckley, Sharon Mannion, Danny Kehoe, Charlie Kranz, Graeme Singleton and Danny McCormack.
The story is set in 2187. A washed-up, drunk, genius scientist called Miller McKee gets a call out of the blue. His Ex, a scientist attempting to invent teleportation covertly, has been murdered in inexplicable circumstances. Drawn into the investigation, he uncovers a web of intrigue, a catastrophic plan and must face the challenge of a mystery played out throughout time and space.
Jonathan Casey is a film music composer, songwriter, performing musician and writer from Ireland.
Jonathan has written for feature films, US & UK national television, advertising, shorts…. and also for fun.
He has fronted bands in the US, Japan, UK & Italy. As a recording artist, he is signed to LYTE Records and has also composed instrumental concert music that has been performed by orchestras across the States, China, Australia, Bulgaria, France and the UK.
He has orchestrated for bands including De Dannan for tours and shows around the world.
Jonathan is also a busy performing musician, entertaining the public, singing out front or lurking behind keyboards in clubs and venues all over Ireland.