Opus Orange releases new EP during pandemic

By Kamala Kirk

Opus Orange is the Santa Monica-based recording project of composer Paul Bessenbacher (PB).

Armed with just a laptop, USB mic and some instruments that fit into a backpack, composer Paul Bessenbacher (PB) camped out in a kitschy Airbnb living room with panoramic views of the ocean.

While staying there, he rerecorded select songs from his album, “Miles From Nowhere,” which was released in February 2020 under his Santa Monica-based recording project Opus Orange. His new EP, “Miles From San Clemente,” came out in December 2020 and features reimagined versions of his songs from the album.

“The songs from “Miles From Nowhere” explore the disorientation of arriving at the wrong destination and the need for intimacy, isolation and silence in a chaotic world,” PB said.

“After they were finished but before they were released, I found myself alone in an Airbnb in San Clemente with a handful of instruments. Without a plan or any specific intent, I started recording and reimagining a few of the same songs from this isolated setting. After returning back to Santa Monica, I added Carlen Walth on pedal steel and Katie Hampton on vocals, which turned out to be just what the EP needed to stand on its own two feet. It’s a quiet internal meditation with sones originally conceived with a full band.”

Opus Orange was founded in 2010 and over the years has morphed to include a collective of members with PB at the helm. PB’s work has appeared in feature films, documentaries and television shows such as “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Younger.” He has collaborated with many artists including Eleni Mandell, Thao Nguyen and Tim Booth.

“Though “Miles From Nowhere” and “Miles From San Clemente” were recorded in 2019, they were released in February and December 2020, respectively,” PB said.

“During the pandemic, we wrote and recorded our upcoming album, which is currently being mixed. Recording during this time has its
challenges, which we met by recording one musician at a time and sending files remotely. I’m hoping to release the new album mid-year.” 

For more information, visit opusorange.com