Twenty Four - Jonathan Ogden
In 2019, the film “1917” was released. It’s a film that intensely follows a short time in the life of two soldiers on a daring mission to save thousands of lives. It pulls all these clever camera tricks to make it feel like a one-shot and it pulls it all off spectacularly; but these aren’t empty gimmicks, they aid and elevate the story. It has received critical acclaim and plaudits from every notable sphere in the movie industry for it’s story-telling and picture-painting; weaving it’s intense narrative through visuals. With Jonathan Ogden’s release of “Twenty Four” in January 2020, the parallels are all there. This 24-track concept album follows each hour of the day, capturing the journey and moods of each and every moment. This beautiful piece of art has been lovingly created by Jonathan, and he has pulled off something spectacular. Tracks flow seamlessly into the next, just as each moment of the day goes unnoticed into the next. Carefully crafted production kept me gripped and also oblivious to the passing of both time and track. Again, these were not just gimmicks, but the production aids and elevates the story telling in a remarkable way.
"This album has challenged the way I see God throughout my day, and I think that is probably the highest compliment I could pay to Jonathan and this piece of art"
From the very first moment of this project, the mood is captured perfectly. “07:00 the Morning Comes” opens the day, and it seems as though every intricacy has been noted and applied as the track kicks off with a gentle tick tock. The optimism reverberating through this track makes me aware that we have an excellent 23 hours/tracks ahead of us, summed up in the delivery of the first lyric ‘once again, the morning comes’, once again we are ready to face this day with God ahead of us, having already laid out it’s twists, turns, and victories. This is a theme throughout this piece, as Jonathan has really delved into what it means to journey each moment of the day with God. In a quote from his website, Jonathan says he “spent the year trying to be intentionally aware of the unique attributes of certain times of day: the way the light changes, the mood and atmosphere of the night in contrast to the day”, and that can really be felt throughout.
There are some incredible moments on this beat tape. My highlights come in the form of “08:00 A Good Day”, “13:00 Walk In The Park” and “19:00 Listen”. In the first of these, Jonathan has placed some really neat samples of the morning news, backed with yet more rising optimism from the synth production, which perfectly kick us into gear for “09:00 New Beginnings”. The second of these has been my favourite moment on this project since my first listen. “13:00 Walk In The Park” is an excellent piece of music, the production on this track is sublime. You can feel how much fun this was to create with every beat and every little production nugget of gold. From the chops and tight cuts in the intro and hooks, to the beautifully quintessential lo-fi keys, to the almost infinite list of samples. This is a really really good track. Lastly, “19:00 Listen” is a great moment on this album, acting as a transition from the late afternoon into the evening, a moment of contemplation and still. The following tracks are a really nice change up in tone of the beat tape, so to have this pause to literally “Listen” was precious. It’s worth noting that my highlights change with almost every listen through.
This album has challenged the way I see God throughout my day, and I think that is probably the highest compliment I could pay to Jonathan and this piece of art.