You might recognise Okandi's voice and so you should. Tobias O'Kandi was front man of O. Children who produced two stunning albums - O. Children and Apnea - in the first three years of the decade we're about to leave. Then things went quiet, rumours abounded about where he'd got to including that he'd gone to prison. He's back with the story behind his disappearance from the public eye and a first track Devil I Know that anyone who loved O. Children will fall for and which should have the same impact on newcomers.
In an extensive Facebook post, Tobias went into detail about the song, the story of the past few years of his life and how he's rebuilt his life and happiness and is making his first steps back into music.
"Devil I Know is a deep synth-driven ballad, which is heavily inspired by my first loves Depeche Mode and Aphex Twin (with some Leonard Cohen in the mix). It tells a story of injustice and compassion in unusual places based on my real life experiences."
"When I was hit by a car the only person that would take my broken body in was a girl that I had befriended two weeks before. She also happened to be a sex worker. Despite her work, and the stigma it holds, this person was the only one in my life at the time that showed me compassion and kindness in my time of need and let me recover in her home for months. I had no one else to turn to. If you're out there and you see this, thank you. As I lay in recovery in a strange house for weeks, which turned into months, a heart-breaking pattern began to emerge. Every time my new friend would come back from work, she'd be in tears, questioning herself, the life decisions that brought her to her reality, and the men that made her feel used and unworthy. Ultimately she hated herself, even though she was a kind person with the biggest heart that stayed with me. One's position and worth should NEVER be dictated by the lecherous assholes of the world. It does not matter whether they're a sex worker or a saint. We must elevate the good people of the world, no matter their background, or else we will all drown."
"The song was written, produced mixed, recorded and mastered by myself, on broken equipment and Apple headphones, in my 16 month old's nursery. I'm not saying this to brag I am happy it turned out as great as I think it did."
"Fun fact - Baby girl also features on the song so it's also her first release as well! (sample starting at 2:46). She is credited as my executive producer, with royalties from the song going to her. This is a fully independent family project."
He played his first live show in Porto at the weekend at the Post Punk Strikes Back Again festival where he played some old O. Children favourites but also some exciting new material and according to social media posts he's in the process of writing a new album.