J Fernandez: Occasional Din
Occasional Din, the new fulllength LP from Chicago artist J Fernandez, is a sunny shoebox diorama for the eternal pessimist. Over the past decade, his songs by have appeared like unexpected gifts, each time invoking a holiday we didn't realize existed. And like good holidays, these songs are imbued with a mythical energy, full of curious moods, charmed settings and the timelessness of a familiar moment.Fernandez starts skeletons of songs with an organ and a Casio drum machine. Through endless revisions and tweaks, he builds and rebuilds each into complex arrangements. With Occasional Din , he mines the sound of the pastÍ¾ drawing influences from vintage Italian pop and soundtrack composers like Bruno Nicolai, Alessandro Alessandroni, and Mina, as well as their American contemporaries like The Free Design and Margo Guryan.Lyrically, Fernandez expands on previous themes of isolation by exploring topics such as climate change, trendforecasting and data collection. The result is a playful pop record that holds a kaleidoscopic mirror up to ourneed for escapism.