​Review: Innocents by Safe Lander

Words by: Chloe Burrows-Bryan

Summer is swiftly approaching with the evenings light-toned, a warm breeze filling the air and the urge for a sense of adventure escalating in our bodies. Although this may not be the summer we were intending, the debut track ‘Innocents’ from Will O’Hea (under the exquisite name of Safe Lander), invites you to feel at one with summer and generates the excitement for the arrival of this prominent season. If you delve into artists such as My Bloody Valentine, Tame Impala and Radiohead, Safe Lander will be an artist to keep your eyes firmly upon…

The track starts with an arpeggiated piano melody which is accompanied by a sturdy bassline, which for some reason reminds me of the intro from The Who by Baba O’Riley; both outstanding. We are then invited into the verse by the drums and the powerful ambient guitar chords that accompany the sweet but soulful vocal line. The synths are sprinkled throughout the pre-chorus and the end of the song, impacting the texture of the song immensely. The second verse is fully stripped back to only consisting of the drums, bass and vocals giving you a diverse atmosphere of sound and feeling.

This track strongly connotes the feeling of summer, sitting on the beach, a cool drink in hand as the sun glistens on your skin. With influences taken from a broad variety of music genres, such as shoegaze, prog rock, dream pop and funk. All these elements have been blended to seamlessly create such a wonderful track. The song ends with an astounding synth solo which was provided by Will’s brother, Jack who semi-improvised the solo on a beautiful sounding Roland Juno 106 Synthesizer. 

Will expresses: 

“Innocents began as a simple four-note piano trill, which ended up being used as a kind of harmonic anchor throughout the song, tucked away behind the layers of sampled drums and guitar textures, although it was never originally intended to be a dance beat of sorts.” 

Jack O’Hea returns once again with his astonishing skill set of mixing and mastering the track which sits stunningly in the ear. The narrative of the track in the lyrics exhibits a journey of self discovery and authority to be at one with yourself. Will continues:

“The song’s lyrics are a kind of pep talk to myself more than anything else, that’s where they come from, the need to tell yourself that something’s wrong and you need to take some responsibility for it but give yourself some slack as well.” 

With Will dominantly focusing on one direction with this debut single and articulating his sound from what was once dense layered bedroom solos to a vigorous artistic identity with Safe Lander. We can expect to experience a visceral experience of music and sound prominently presented in this track and the string of releases yet to come. With an EP scheduled for end of this year, we hope to see the multi-instrumentalist captivate listeners and be a one to watch in the music industry. 

Innocents’ is out now.

Instagram: @safelandermusic
Facebook: @safelander