Ben Osborn is a composer, poet and multi-instrumentalist. Already known as a composer for theatre and film and a lyricist and librettist, 2019 saw the release of his debut album Letters from the Border.
Channelling Leonard Cohen-esque balladry, Ben draws also from electronica, folk and 20th century art music. Ethereal string sections rise and fade, Björk-like beats skitter, Erik Satie piano chords drift into view: in less capable hands it might sound miscellaneous, but he weaves his disparate influences into textural tapestries that sound like nobody but him.
Ben’s highly acclaimed debut album Letters from the Border was the result of an extraordinary musical partnership with producer and violinist Alex Stolze. The album was created in two months at the remote Nonostar Studio on the German-Polish border.
Characterised by originality and honesty, Ben’s writing is brilliantly offset by the soundworlds that he and Alex craft. In ‘Fast Awake’, an early morning anxiety attack is described over complex electronic polyrhythms; ‘A Bridge of Starlings’ explores the surreal side of love in a landscape of found sounds and choral voices; ‘A Guide to Gothenburg for the Sleepless’ deals unflinchingly with grief over a sea of synthesisers and violins; ‘My Sister the Swimmer’ contrasts sunlit nostalgia with unspoken family tensions.
Among accolades from journalists, radio DJs and music lovers around the world, the album was listed in the top 10 albums of 2019 by Curve Ball Radio and the title track was nominated for an International Songwriting Award.