OneOhTrix Point Never, real name Daniel Lopatin, is an artist that likes to skirt alongside the edge of the normal confines of genres and traditional musical boundaries, while still pushing the zeitgeist in subtle ways. His new album Magic Oneohtrix Point Never plays with the idea of a radio format, using cutaway sections of fuzz, noise and talk radio to help break up the album.
The album features some pretty big names like Arca, Caroline Polachek and The Weeknd, who served as an executive producer on the LP and OPN credits him for making this LP more innovative. OPN said to The Guardian that the Canadian superstar offered the advice of “Burn it down! This is an OPN record!" According to the producer, The Weeknd "was really in his corner."
Their collaboration “No Nightmares” fits with what The Weeknd did on his album out earlier this year After Hours, meshing a smooth 80’s ballad into the overall format of this LP.
Magic always has a somber, yet beautiful feel to it, either as it descends into the crackling fuzz of the radio and because of how the songs flow into each other. There is the crunchy and distorted “I Don’t Love Me Anymore” with some guitar to top off the teen angst in this song. But the moments of beauty really shine through with tracks like the orchestral “Long Road Home” or the flowing and gorgeous “Imago.”
“The Whether Channel” has the bleeps and bloops that feel like it could be been a less tense outtake from Uncut Gems. Then it changes into about two thirds of the way through with a vocalist adding a different look to this track that embodies how this album twists and turns, but always within the unique and strange outlook that Lopatin offers with his music.
The LP comes off of what may have been Lopatin’s most successful project to date – his soundtrack for Uncut Gems, putting a new spotlight on his music. This is much less tense, though not less innovative, using the radio format loosely to help guide the album. It isn’t as wedded to radio like Vince Staples’ FM, but it does offer plenty of different sounds and styles as we traverse an album radio show. His music has never been something that would obviously fit onto radio, despite his history of working with radio-friendly stars. So instead he brought the radio to him.
Get your copy of the project here and listen to it below.