Cygnet Song

Omar Ahmad


Lurien Zittertkopf

June 18, 2023

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Thoughtful layers of guitar and field recordings deliver true peace and tease towards a cathartic project

The beauty of Cygnet Song is how carefully it retraces the past. Omar Ahmad’s second single, looking towards the release of his debut album Inheritance, acknowledges the constant tension and subsequent release within his music and completely lets go of the former. Cygnet Song, a heavenly four minutes of guitar improvisations and soft background noise created by manipulating recordings of his niece and nephew clapping, Ahmad undisturbed and sitting squarely within this moment of reminiscence. Ahmad’s focus is on childhood and learning to reignite the curiosity and playfulness lost in his adult years, the drifting instrumentation sensitive and mature but possessing a wealth of sweetness and light in it – it’s a piece that’s incredibly easy to fall into, but Cygnet Song knows to not let you immerse yourself so much that Ahmad’s intent is lost in its pastoral ambience. Cygnet Song’s storm of emotions is rendered gentle, caring and deeply intimate even as it reaches into Ahmad’s memory for a rekindling of his younger, more nervous self.

Omar Ahmad’s slow, thoughtful dive into childhood makes an impact because Cygnet Song doesn’t have to work very hard in order to bring it to life, the excitement of discovery as a kid now with a soft haze over it as he takes into consideration everything that has changed his perspective of the world over the years. Now aware of what he’d lost in himself between then and now, Cygnet Song’s magic comes from seeing him reconnect those lost bonds across its four minutes, not rushing into remembrance but always moving closer to get a clearer picture of the past. Ahmad doesn’t take Cygnet Song far from where it begins because he doesn’t have to: everything he wanted here is already rooted inside him, Cygnet Song the bridge for all of him to become whole again. It’s a simple goal, and Cygnet Song’s flowing, reflective composition makes it utterly gorgeous in practice.