A Review of "In Tatters" by Sociologist Randy Blazak
David Dallas Ochoa’s new EP, In Tatters, comes out of left field. The five tracks contain so many layers of intrigue, you can listen to it on multiple levels. Classic Miles Davis albums give you something similar. Sometime you focus on the trumpet, other listens you reserve for the piano or just the melody. Ochoa’s work fits a similar profile. At first, there is a struggle to figure out what box this music fits into, but then, once you let go, there are all kind of tasty bits and pieces to focus on; the acoustic rhythms, the socially adroit lyrics, the right angle vocals, the unexpected instrumentation. Fortunately it all adds up into something cohesive and powerful.
There are elements that are reminiscent of Kate Bush records or some of the more arty New Wave bands of the early 1980s, so it’s striking that all these sounds are coming from just Ochoa. For a 5-song EP, there’s a good range of tracks, including the romantic duet, “A Tiny Spell.” More would be welcomed. Portland is deep with talent and self-produced music but In Tatters is something truly unique. It really challenges the listener to unpack the music itself, but there’s so much there that it’s easily worth the effort. This is an artist with a long lifeline.
- Prof. Randy Blazak (3/6/18)