Robert Shields, who performs as ONR., (pronounced “honor”) spent his formative years in Scotland, cutting his teeth with the glittery sounds of musicians like Kate Bush, Elton John, Freddie Mercury, but shaping his own sonics with an inclination towards the Americana of Bruce Springsteen and an obsession with George Orwell’s dystopian classic “1984.” Those two latter influences make their mark in his latest track, “AMERICAN GODS.” The anthemic and acutely aware track spills out lyrics like “Life cuts hard in America / So tell all your American Gods / There’s no room for sentiment” backed by a clapping drum machine as if your favorite 80’s pop band a la Depeche Mode was in the middle of an existential crisis. Today, ONR. shares a stripped down version of the track exclusively with LADYGUNN.
Speaking on the raw iteration of the track, Shields shares, “I’ve always been a huge believer that the sign of a good song is the ability to scale it up or down without it losing any of its impact. You should be able to play it on an acoustic guitar or with a 16-piece orchestra and have it still stand up for itself. Anytime I send a demo track to my manager, I always send two versions; a full production idea, and an acoustic piano version, that way I know I’m not losing track of what’s important. I really love the stripped version of ‘AMERICAN GODS,’ and I’m happy I left it as laid-bare as it is.”
This Spring, ONR. will be taking US stages for the first time with headline shows in Los Angeles and New York City and supporting Mondo Cozmo on tour.
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