Melbourne artist Simon Lam goes by the name of Nearly Oratorio for all of his solo musical creations, and it would seem that this title goes far beyond being just some random label. I had a little search to see what an Oratorio actually is and found out that it’s “a large-scale musical work for orchestra, telling a usually sacred story without costumes, scenery, or dramatic action.”
This description couldn’t be more apt in describing the work of Simon Lam, for his sound is understated and without drama, but there’s a lot going on beneath the cool surface of his songs, and a far greater picture unfolds within the smouldering intensity of these still waters.
Previously of the bands I’lls and Kllo, Simon Lam’s first release as Nearly Oratorio came in 2011 with his debut EP Showers, and it has taken nearly five years for its follow-up to arrive. But like all good things worth the wait, time brings with it a sense of maturity and this is certainly true of Nearly Oratorio’s latest EP, ‘Tin.’
Title track ‘Tin’ was one of the first singles taken from this new EP and is a wonderful layering of dynamic textures and sounds, combining moody atmospheric productions with soft, haunting vocal melodies. This rich melody completely envelops whilst the gentle chinking of a tin-like sound offers rhythmic depth, I’m finding hard not to get completely absorbed. Listen above.