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October 13 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm£10
AJIMAL is Newcastle-born, London-based multi-instrumentalist Fran O’Hanlon, who acquired his performance moniker in the aftermath of being caught up in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake. A medical student at the time, he worked in Port-au-Prince over the subsequent 6 months, during which time he encountered a former Voodoo witch doctor who had once used the name. From the age of 4, O’Hanlon began, if begrudgingly, learning to play classical piano but veered away from this and only returned to the instrument in his early twenties.
Leaning on electronic and folk influences, and now working alongside Grammy Award-winning producer & engineer, Guy Massey (The Beatles, Spiritualized, Bill Fay), AJIMAL’s second album, As It Grows Dark, Light, showcases his haunting and bold songwriting, with intimate vocals that weave an otherworldly soundscape of electronica mixed with O’Hanlon’s rich orchestral arrangements.
AJIMAL was selected from thousands of entries as one of the winners of Glastonbury Festival’s 2020 Emerging Talent Competition, as well as the Focusrite 25th Anniversary competition at London’s prestigious AIR studios, which first sparked his collaboration with Guy Massey.
AJIMAL has released two LPs, including his 2015 debut, Childhood, which was created with a cast of over 50 musicians from the North East of England. 2020’s Remix EP featured reworked pieces from Dark / Light, with contributions from Everything Everything, Friendly Fires, AVAWAVES, Guy Massey (FLÛÙF) and Hinako Omori. The album has been championed by the likes of BBC Radio 6Music’s Tom Robinson who called Above All Else, Be Kind “one of my favourite songs of the year”, as well as KCRW’s Jason Kramer, Radio X’s John Kennedy and BBC Radio 1’s Phil Taggart. Other notable supporters include Felix White (The Maccabees) and Mae Martin (Netflix’s Feel Good).
AJIMAL recorded live sessions for BBC Radio 5’s Laura Whitmore, X-Posure on Radio X and BBC Introducing and was interviewed on BBC World Service following the release of his moving video for Above All Else, Be Kind, which featured a host of healthcare professionals during the Covid-19 pandemic. O’Hanlon is a qualified medical doctor, who divides his time between music and medicine. His interest is in palliative medicine and he works in a hospice in London.
Spotify support has included featured tracks in playlists such as The Most Beautiful Songs in the World, The Other List and Lost In The Woods. Above All Else, Be Kind has garnered 1.5 million plays. Syncs include Netflix’s Feel Good opening credits, Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight with other placements for Sky Sports, MTV and Ubisoft.
During his live performances, AJIMAL captures moments of both grandeur and pin-drop intimacy – with support slots alongside the likes of James Vincent McMorrow, The 1975, Kathryn Joseph, Lucy Rose, Loney Dear, Lanterns on the Lake and Nadine Shah. Live highlights include sold-out headline shows at House of St Barnabas and London’s Folklore as well as a forthcoming sold-out album launch at London’s St Matthias Church. AJIMAL also performed for How the Light Gets In Festival, Greenpeace AAA at Glastonbury and a widely viewed Twitch performance for Manchester-based label, Scruff of the Neck. His US live debut in 2019 included two nights at LA’s prestigious Hotel Café, with further international dates anticipated in 2022. O’Hanlon is currently writing and recording the third AJIMAL LP, due for release in 2022.