Fans of Gavin Glass have eagerly awaited his new release ‘Opus Pocus’ and their patience is set to be rewarded with his most robust and mature offering to date.
Jump-starting the album is the opening track Thirty Somethings, a refreshingly straightforward pop- rock track. Glass’ vocals take us on a searingly honest critique of the social mores of a generation grappling with adulthood in modern Ireland. With dismayed vocals he opines “It will always remain a mystery. We work to a bone for a mortgage and loan for a house we’ll never own. Now they’ve got you on all fours, Mam and Dad were guarantors”.
No doubt many will find his lyrics unnervingly relatable as he mines the anxieties of a generation searching for stability, romantic and otherwise, that has thus far eluded them. Thirty Somethings is a wry commentary on the futility of so many endeavours, such as the emotional abyss that is modern-day dating; Glass laments that “the weekends all about sleeping around with a view to only settling down”.
Peppered throughout the album is a trio of instrumental pieces, OP#3, OP#14 & OP#41. These tracks incorporate strings akin to American folk and synths that are meditative in form. These instrumental interludes allow for a literal pause for thought between chapters of the album.
Radio-friendly Horseshoe Tattoo is an optimistic love song with a sway-along tempo and ascending base, with a catchy chorus that showcases Glass’ vocal range. One could be forgiven for mistaking the track as lovechild of U2 and Springsteen with its soulful vocals and thundering arrangements. Another possible radio favourite is the uplifting Matador, distorted vocals that launch into operatic crashing guitars and clap-along organs.
The latter part of the album changes to a more reflective mood that reemerges firmly in heartland rock. Break Your Daddy’s Heart is tender song written by Glass after the birth of his daughter, touching in its lyrics of adoration and protection. Don’t Go Thinking allows the pedal steel guitar to take pride of place alongside Glass’s vocals.
The concluding track Count Exile incorporates electronica with classic rock that is reassuring in tone and is a worthy close. New fans, as well as avid listeners, of Glass’ vast repertoire will certainly appreciate the hocus pocus in ‘Opus Pocus’, leaving us with no doubt that Gavin Glass’ craftsmanship has certainly come out of exile again.