Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Ian Grimble and Richard Matthews of Communion Music at 2KHz, Crouch End, London
It's easy to feel like you're being devoured, when you listen to O. Children. It's possible that you'll become like Pinocchio in the belly of the whale or Little Red Riding Hood in the belly of the wolf. You feel like you're in those bellies and you're fumbling around in your pockets for some matches or a lighter and something to set on fire to smoke yourself to safety. You're hoping for that hunter to come along, to take his knife and slice open that wolf's guts, let you escape and then fill those guts back up with stones. These are dark tales that - while they may not be your personal stories - are so dark that you feel their depths by association. You are consumed by the grim lights and the insomnia-wracked faces of the bedeviled in these songs.
Lead singer, Tobi O'Kandi, suggests that he's already reserved his place in hell and he'd like nothing more than for you to join him. He'll have enough space at his table and there will be plenty of room in his bed as well. He'd love the company if you can just pull yourself away. He'd love it if you'd come and roast with him. The fire's nice. It's less unpleasant than you're thinking it will be. O'Kandi sings, "The truth is I am human."
It says a lot. It speaks to the need to ask for forgiveness and knowing that there's not going to be much sympathy out there, as we're all in the same boat. It speaks to the blanket excuse for all our faults. They're usually bad, but acceptable, unless you'd just like to choose to feel differently about them. O. Children would prefer the devouring and the need to be saved by being cut out of a belly when all appears to be lost.