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David Dodini of Orissa – Photo courtesy of David Dodini
Progressive/cinematic rock and metal project Orissa and exclusively premiering their video for “Blue Communion” right here at The Big Takeover from their recent album Resurrection. The album received rave features from Rebel Noise, Alternative Press, Prog Sphere, Metal Nexus, and Guitar World, among other tastemaker sites.
The video adds a new dimension to Orissa central figure, songwriter, and instrumentalist David Dodini’s creative vision. It showcases a pair of dancers who move and contort in simpatico feeling to the band’s music. The video also features Dodini and his musical contributors performing “Blue Communion” in the same setting as the dancers, adding a live show vibe to the intricate and compelling song and dance.
Dodini reveals details about the song, explaining, ““Blue Communion”, is the epic, grand finale on my sonic novel, Resurrection. The song explores the previously introduced themes of the interplay between sensuality and the divine, eros and the soul connection and the bounds of mortality and boundless eternity. On an album filled with songs that are epic, multi-movement journeys, “Blue Communion” is the deepest, most sensual, dramatic and cathartic of them all.”
As for the entrancing live performance video, Dodini divulges deep details, commenting, “I have a great love for the art of dance. I saw in my mind’s eye a male/female duo who could represent the essence of the beauty of the dance of masculine and feminine energies. I have a love of circus arts as well, so I began to search for an art form and dancers that could embody the empyreal, sensual-erotic beauty of the song.”
“I discovered Anna Venizelos’ work and was impressed and intrigued. I felt some caution since with contortion there was a chance that the aesthetic could veer toward the grotesque and away from the beautiful. There was an equal chance that the art of contortion could capture an essential element latent in the music and poetry – the pathos and anguish of the pleasure-pains one must move through to reach ecstatic states of psycho-physio consciousness. A deep, abiding love, that finds release into communion with the divine, does not come free and easy – there is struggle and pain in the journey of attainment. Would this art form express the flowing, living statuesque beauty I saw in my mind’s eye and also show the grace under fire that is required by divine initiation?”
“I met with Anna and [second dancer] Javier Dzul and left them with a simple direction – to capture the essence of the poetry and the music through dance. During the first couple of rehearsals they presented the choreography, and I was ecstatic with what I saw. Every pose and movement perfectly embodied its moment in the song and tied together into a dream like representation of the whole.”
“In terms of the filming, we originally planned to do a live play-through video. Capturing the audio proved to be problematic outside of the recording studio. I recorded the new drum parts afterward at Spin Studios, enlisting Jeff Gretz, (of Zao), to perform the new drum parts. Michael Robayo, [founder and director] of SiteB was great to work with. We knew that with all of the footage of the dancing to the live performances, we could easily turn this into a music video and abandon the live-playthrough format. We did this by approaching editing with the intention of allowing the choreography to be the narrative and gestures that express the song. We interwove the energy of the band and the dancer’s simultaneous performances to give it more movement.”
Orissa was created in 2010 by Dodini, a virtuoso singer, guitarist, and bassist, who writes, arranges, and performs all the parts on Orissa’s records. Born out the of desire to explore inner creative space and to create a distinctive, cathartic, deeply personal, and therapeutic art, Dodini abandoned his strictly classical background and delved into his own songwriting, fusing his classical training with his love for jazz, Balkan, and other ancient rhythmic traditions. These styles translated into Dodini’s immersion into metal and progressive music, as the genres carry numerous parallels.
Latest album Resurrection, features Dodini’s vocal and instrumental arrangements and performances, as well as drummer Jason Gianni (Trans Siberian Orchestra, Neal Morse, Book Of Mormon). In 2016, Orissa brought the music from the studio to the stage when Dodini attracted the best musicians from NYC’s progressive, metal, and rock communities. Orissa’s live band is a roster of NYC’s finest musicians from Trans Siberian Orchestra, Neal Morse Band, Stratospheerius, Book Of Mormon, Dyed In Grey, Haakons Fault, Emergence, and Astronaut Down.
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