"A Long Way From Home" by Ollie BondReview
So.. another day, another bolt from the blue release, this time the phenomenon being "A Long Way From Home", the new Ollie Bond single..
Ollie's own life seems to have consisted in a sequence of relocations of various lengths & these may have influenced his writing: many songs seem to reference or allude to journeys or at least physical or emotional movement of some king: for example "When I Went Away", "I'm Not Coming Back", or "Slipping Away", often using the metaphor of the physical for the emotional too. It's no coincidence either that he uses "journey" frequently to express his relationship with his fans.
Ollie's songs are usually complex in terms of the emotions, reflecting realities of life, though he tends to resolve towards the optimistic. He appreciates the smaller pleasures in life & celebrates them from time to time, but this is one of those which is apparently more unequivocally about his "happy place": considering when he wrote it (as COVID19 struck), one must assume that he did so to remind himself & as an antidote to the prevailing collective mood: just what the doctor must have ordered in fact.
One of his louder, fuller band offerings, I find it hard to remember an Ollie Bond song with so obviously many instrumental and vocal parts: nor indeed one with a vocal performance quite like this one. He sounds so assured, content & happy to share his blessings with others. Not that his earlier work was in any way callow, but there is a sense of maturity in his wisdom here & perhaps even that after a lot of moving, he has, at least for the time being, found a place to settle & rest. That place is, it would seem, as much about who you are with as any geographical location, but it definitely is about the higher aspects of life as he explicitly rejects the grosser aspects of materialism as bringing happiness. Despite the initial implications of the title, he's at home now.
It's a very encouraging sort of song & I wondered why he left it until now to share it, given the lower places most of his audience would have found themselves in during the many intervening months since he composed it.. At any rate, come when it may, it's a tonic, one of the ones in his canon which can provoke a dance (albeit quite a stately one, but you'd require a partner: no bad thing in the context of what he's telling us) & one of the ones he himself is particularly pleased with: and with good reason too.
You can buy or stream "A Long Way From Home" from the customary platforms & I've also added it to the "Hot Music Live Presents" Spotify playlist https://open.spotify.com/playlist/3oCggbP6HwfZDqaI2vNUtn?si=74e2a16a426c481f