Strength Through Hard Times, Constellation Club: All Details, Box Schtumm Show, Spring Inter-Pla-Net-Live and Ashes To Ashes Live Video + LIAVFOS

April 14, 2023 § Leave a comment

So much has happened since the last blog so this is going to be extensive. Life throws things at you and this time it hit hard. A really tough December and I lost my mum at the start of January. From this profound sadness and though undoubtedly walking the difficult path of grieving for a while yet, life carries on and I’m reaching from within to be able to carry on the journey. Raf and O is the vehicle and the motivation is strong if not stronger. Through hard times strength comes.

We performed in West Kirby Arts Centre last November to an excellent reception. Special thanks to Mal Robinson for filming us on stage and for the realisation of this video. I dedicate it to my mum up in the stars and to my dad who returned to the stars many moons ago … with all my love …

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Raf and O -‘Ashes To Ashes’ (David Bowie Cover) Live at WKAC. Filmed by Mal Robinson

O Richard Smith performs live at West Kirby Arts Centre. Captured by Mal Robinson

Stars On The Horizon

I’ve done a lot of writing recently, so much more than this album that’s coming up … next one has already being conceived, literally … 
We saw Moonage daydream, Brett Morgen’s film exploring David Bowie and it was wonderful! Poignant, beautifully, chaotically and creatively edited, Bowie’s music and persona gloriously attacking our senses, his mentoring presence intimately speaking to us through his journey of discovery. I came away from the cinema inspired. And to keep pursuing. Creators must keep going, platforms are increasingly difficult but we’re scratching the surface of a possible way forward, glimpsing through excitement and trepidation (haven’t done this sort of thing before) we have fleshed out what we originally concocted as our Constellation Club. It will soon be a reality.  


a club by Raf and O

where song stars are born


Launching in June ahead of upcoming releases, we really have pondered this throughout and decided that to be able to logistically make it all happen, it could only work as a yearly subscription. The subscription will be hosted on the Raf and O Bandcamp and I will update the link here as soon as we launch! Keep reading!

Independent Artists in the 21st Century are increasingly relying on those who believe in the impact of artistic output as a way of enriching all our lives and the inner power that is generated as a result. 

We are Raf and O, we create songs, music, art, interpretations, performances, we direct all our projects.

Can you support Raf and O creating and releasing music and more? Would you like to support weekly monthly yearly writing, your name on our album, get to see new lyrics and hear new songs before anybody else, get to own an original unique and bespoke booklet of handwritten lyrics only available to members of Constellation Club? Would you like to become a monthly guardian of a Raf and O song? Would you like to own your own portrait painted by me (Raf that is), whilst you are listening to a Raf and O song? Would you like our utmost gratitude and the knowledge you are supporting proactive and hard working independent artists to keep going? 


Shine With Raf and O £110 pa
With this tier, upon joining, we will make specifically for you and send you an original bespoke lovingly realised physical A4 booklet full of hand written lyrics for all the songs of the upcoming Raf and O album ‘We Are Stars’ only available to the members of Constellation Club + far ahead of their official releases to the wider public we will post monthly song stars formation posts alternating full lyrics and audio of new songs in their stripped down incarnation + your name will appear in the thanks of our upcoming album + you will be able to become a monthly guardian of a Raf and O song of your choosing with your name (if wished) appearing on monthly Raf and O song guardian social media posts + extra surprises along the way. As we develop the club, you will also have the ability to purchase merch which will only be made available to members of Constellation Club. 

Dazzle With Raf and O £230 pa
With this tier, upon joining you will receive everything in the previous tier + you will commission an original portrait painted by me (Raf that is) from a photo of you listening to your favourite Raf and O song which will be sent to you personally when ready! Unique and personal art, personally made and delivered to you, massively discounted only to members of Constellation Club!





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Raf and O perform live at West Kirby Arts Centre. Captured by Mal Robinson

In the meantime ….

In 2023, ‘We Are Stars’ album will be released and we truly look forward to that! Here’s the album sequencing, many songs were introduced in their early development to our hardcore fans during our online shows and we are now proud to announce them as part of Raf and O’s 5th and upcoming album ‘We Are Stars’. 

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’Inextricably linked to David Bowie’! Thank you to the people at Schtumm! On Sunday May 21st Raf and O head over to Wiltshire, precisely to Box near Bath for a special show promoted by Schtumm who are welcoming us in the Steve Hall arena from where we will present the music of Raf and O and David Bowie! We’re very excited and discounted advanced tickets are on sale now right here, a bargain! Spread the word, we’re looking forward to go west and can’t wait to perform for you !

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Excitement running high at INTER-PLA-NET-LIVE SHOWS 2023 glowing with live music warming our hearts through good and bad times. Two have been, two more to go this Spring, we’re live on your screen through your ears and into your consciousness. Huge thank you to our fans who have been to so many shows since 2020, a wonderful bunch. April 29 is our next one. Join us at this link

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Raf and O perform live at INTER-PLA-NET-LIVE

We leave you with some stunning captures of Raf and O performing ‘Dream Machine’ from the extraordinary film ‘Language Is A Virus From Outer Space’ (LIAVFOS) shot at the Queen Elizabeth Hall for the William S Burroughs centenary and lovingly realised by director Neville Farmer together with Richard Strange who also put together the whole show. An unforgettable event alongside a brilliant bill of artists. The film was screened last Summer at The Wire 40 years celebration and was selected for the Oaxaca filmfest.

We hope you will join our Constellation Club.
Be a star that keeps shining in our universe,
we’ll endeavour to do the same.

Here’s to the power within …

Raf and O ❤ 🌟✨

Raf and O perform Dream Machine in the film ‘Language Is A Virus From Outer Spacefilmed and realised by Neville Farmer and Richard Strange


‘We Are Stars’ Raf And O’s New Album is waiting in the wings, Shows Coming Up, Lyrics and Lab of Ideas, We Are All Stars and It Matters! Let’s Make It Work Together + as we wait, Raf Sings Kate

July 1, 2022 § Leave a comment



Raf and O live at Paper Dress Vintage 22 09 19. Photo from footage by Mal Robinson

As we’re setting ouselves one thousand and twenty ideas and only sixteen or so daily hours to see us through to the completion of some of those courses, we’re excitedly reaching out and let the rest of the world know about the title for our new album to be ‘We Are Stars’! One course is set for sure, we are all stars and it matters! Our super fans of course already knew, being avid participators of THE TOUR ONLINE and Inter-Pla-Net-live shows, during which we aired many live renditions of our new songs, as well as loving renditions of the songs of David Bowie and Kate Bush, we’re very thankful to them and I think they are our constellation club!!! I want everything to be out now but I’ll try to remain patient as this year advances, it will bring music, word, image and live engagements. Times are testing, the human road is littered with obstacles, set in a galaxy, part of our universe throbbing with storms, it’s so easy to lose one’s way, we can all do that, but let’s keep going…

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Raf and O live on Inter-Pla-Net-Live 15 01 22

Raf and O live on Inter-Pla-Net-Live 06 06 22


Congratulations to Kate Bush for her recent chart success, so lovely to hear her interview on the radio the other day. Of course it’s not so long ago that we played several shows celebrating her music, listening back to them, there are many songs I would like all of you to hear, I’m getting a few ideas, so now, as we wait for ‘We Are Stars’, I wish to share with you a couple of Kate’s songs performed by Raf and O Live on The Tour Online during May and June 2021. An excerpt from ‘Misty, a rough diamond as only a second run through but I love this song and ‘In The Warm Room’.

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Raf and O -‘Misty’ live 26 06 21 excerpt (Kate Bush Cover)

Raf and O –  ‘In The Warm Room’ live 22 05 21 (Kate Bush Cover)


A few months ago I talked about shared air shows, this feels too ominous now – shows in venues feels about right. Truly looking forward to return to West Kirby Arts Centre, 11 11 22, (tickets on the LIVE page) a date now set late in the autumn: the show will see new Raf and O music, the song world of David Bowie with us as Children Of The Bewlay Brothers, on the road! We truly appreciate each one of you who come to our shows, I hope you won’t mind me suggesting, seen how difficult and demanding it is to make it all work, the purchase of early tickets whenever possible, you will not be disappointed and you will help to support independent music and grass root venues – let’s make it work together!
A special London show is finally in the planning stages and others will be announced as we go.
Our pedal boards shimmer in the dark and remind me, we’re on a mission.

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We’re taking bookings for the songs of KATE BUSH, DAVID BOWIE and Raf and O, I now draw / paint portraits (see our previous BLOG) and O and I are both teaching. HERE is one more portrait I did recently of my dear friend Klarita.

Reach us at:

You can also reach us on social media, at online shows, at venues shows, come say hi, let’s make it work!
Do you want to be a star in our constellation?

We are all stars, they are all around. I want to share a lyric I wrote from the new album

With Love


and O ❤


‘The Man Who Fell To Earth’ inspires Raf and O’s ’Tommy Newton’. The Tour Online is dead, long live The Tour! Constellation Club, Inter-Pla-Net-Live, Shared Air Shows and Art Is Calling

September 18, 2021 § Leave a comment

‘Cause if you think of what it’s all about, you probably find it’s about creating.

Side One Of This Very Blog


Mission accomplished. 24 dates and one year later, Raf and O (aka Raf Mantelli and O Richard Smith) with our fans emerge from The Tour Online celebrating. Dependable, journeying together, ‘cause if you think of what it’s all about, you probably find it’s about creating.

Courageous and strong, varied and long, each show different from the next, The Metro’s newspaper featured Raf and O’s livestream shows among the best online. Punching through to the other side of the screen, interacting with the visuals we created for the shows, there were performances, tensions, drama, release, there were smiles, sounds, lots of sounds, live, smooth, edgy, dynamic. There were a lot of interactions with our fans. Intertwining interpretations of David Bowie songs (TMWSTW live video features on our previous blog) colliding with renditions, at time total revisions of the songs of Kate Bush, riding the collision through to the other side to meet Raf and O songs with a lot of the already released tracks freshly approached for the tour and a lot of the new, unheard and previewed for the eyes and the ears of the eager out there. O and I want to really say: A deep felt THANK YOU, you are the best fans and we are going to bring you more. You can find The Tour Online action shots album here


“Intoxicating, reflective, artistic and dramatic”

God Is In The TV zine

“A spellbinding lamentable love song … sublime”

Monolith Cocktail

Amongst the new Raf and O songs, one in particular is close to our hearts: ‘Tommy Newton’, which will be part of our new album is inspired by ‘The Man Who Fell To Earth’, the 1976 science fiction film based on the novel by Walter Davis directed by Nicolas Roeg, starring David Bowie in the role of Thomas Jerome Newton and Candy Clark in the one of Mary-Lou. It’s a love song I’ve written from the perspective of Mary-Lou, she’s talking to Tommy, but it’s really happening in her mind, she’s talking to herself and she’s talking to us. I loved the film all my life, just as I’ve loved Bowie. Performed for the first time ever on The Tour Online, the live video of this performance has been featured by the press and now is part of this blog too!

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Raf and O – ‘Tommy Newton’ Live on The Tour Online 12 June 2021

Side Two Of This Very Blog 

Last month I published my stream of consciousness on social media. 

“Some time we take our time to figure out where we may want to head out next. There is no clear path set, only the leading light of our imagination to determine our next steps. So, with that in mind, we’re at the end of the tour online and we may yet have to define what has to come up next, under the leading light of stars, some place afar.”

Raf Mantelli (2021)

So we’ve let our imagination flow and time has clearly grown, or has it compressed?

….. On the event horizon
We’re launching two projects 


5 shows 
one every 5 weeks 
like the points of a star
Starting January 2022

Building on the strength and success of The Tour Online, INTER-PLA-NET-LIVE will see Raf and O presenting new live shows in the ether, accessible from all parts of the world and who knows, the universe perhaps?
Reaching new territories – it’s in the DNA.

plus …..

Are you a star in our galaxy? 
A new club to see the birth of our NEW ALBUM.
Very excited. Details to be announced

plus …..
The return of SHARED AIR SHOWS

We have a new name for those shows in the flesh, you know, the ones where we share the same physical space as the audience. ‘Shared Air Shows’, that’s how we will refer to them from now on. Alongside INTER-PLA-NET-LIVE (our future live online shows) we are testing the atmosphere soon to be leaving the capsule. Yes we will back wherever possible, performing in the flesh too, so look out for Shared Air Shows by Raf and O from soon into the future … 


(Tommy Newton Live Video)
(Babooshka Live Video)
(The Man Who Sold The World Live Video)

For bookings and more info email:

plus …..

The rekindling of another passion of mine – ART. 

After years of making music and writing songs I’m making art again, I see them working like a seesaw. Maintaining a visual connection through album artwork creation, video visions, visuals and performance, this is only a step away, or the gestures of a hand. Below a couple of portraits, you may recognise the subjects.
Watch out for work and it will take different forms, from now into the future …
Commissions are of course welcome –

plus …..

There is more, but you know… it can wait for now!
2022 will see us busy …. Raf and O ❤

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Raf Mantelli Art – ‘O Richard’ and ‘Thrills’ © Raf Mantelli, 2021

To be kept up to date with the latest follow us here:



This is The Tour Online, now mid voyage, come aboard! Raf and O play Underwater Blue and Bowie – The Man Who Sold The World: live videos

March 22, 2021 § Leave a comment

Six months ago we started The Tour Online and the performances brought in the press. We are very grateful

“Stunning” Pennyblackmusic

“It’s going to haunt my dreams” Joe Muggs

“Greatly strung out on heavens high as always.

Love it” Monolith Cocktail

Untrapping (can we do this?) our way out of this global overhanging shadow, with hope in sight we are still battling. Envisaging new ways to bring live shows to our fans, we embarked on one year long virtual tour, where we launched Children Of The Bewlay Brothers (to David Bowie with Love), a project to bring you renditions and interpretations of ‘the man who sang himself to Earth’ alongside The Kick Inside – The Songs of Kate Bush and the songs of Raf and O. We’ve been visually and sonically bathing in monochrome and colour hues, reticulations, guitars. and atmos, piano and upright strings and lots and lots of vocals down those internet cables, while the light of a century old moon bass drum overlooked unsuspectingly. (Continues below)

Fifteen shows down the line we have been performing live to our fans in front of the camera on the other side of the screen, a big big thank you to them, they have been exploring with us a new way we can perform. Some stills from the virtual tour are HERE , follow us on STAGEIT, the platform we use to perform.

Below, a couple of live videos showing a glimpse of The Tour Online, a peep hole, a key that you can turn, to come inside you must come on board or continue the journey with us. Each performance lasts almost an hour, always new surprises, the audience interact live with us through the power of the written word aka live chat, we, on the other hand interact with the spoken word and live sound & vision. You can find our remaining dates on our LIVE page. We are waiting for you!

Tickets are now on sale for the following shows:
Mar 27 – The Kick Inside The Songs Of Kate Bush – TICKETS
Apr 10 – The Songs Of Raf and O – TICKETS
Apr 24 – The Kick Inside The Songs Of Kate Bush – TICKETS
May 08 – Children Of The Bewlay Brothers – TICKETS
(to David Bowie with Love)

We have also relaunched our sisters FB and TWITTER pages as Raf and O play Bush & Bowie: The Kick Inside and Children Of The Bewlay Brothers. Give them a like and a follow and of course our main social media pages have journaled all stages of our tour so far – you can catch all updates HERE and HERE! See you soon on The Tour Online, in fact we’re back this Saturday with The Kick Inside – The Songs Of Kate Bush at this link. Totally looking forward to unleash some more surprises.

With love and renewed energy

Raf and O XxX


Raf and O as Children Of The Bewlay Brothers – ‘The Man Who Sold The. World’ Live on The Tour Online November 2020
Raf and O – ‘Underwater Blue’ Live on The Tour Online October 2020

In Chaos, In Line, We Tour Online, We Are Raf and O, We Are The Kick Inside, We Are Children Of The Bewlay Brothers

June 24, 2020 § Leave a comment

No other time that I’ve lived through has ever felt as sobering. We can’t be near … the underlining fear … we’re through … we’re not … in chaos yet in line … the strangest times.
Testing our sanity, a world living with coronavirus had affected everyone’s lives beyond recognition. The world had slowed down.

At Raf and O headquarters, what could have been initially perceived as a quashed creative flow, has in fact reversed its black hole effect. Engaging again, yes challenged by the events, but responding to them in different ways.
Having had to stop our physical engagements just after coming back from a show near Liverpool at West Kirby Arts Centre, a show with a thoroughly warm reception and vibe, was a sudden blow, but the gravity of the global situation was far more harrowing. Like for many other artists and musicians, performances stopped, ongoing workshops were replaced in part by online teaching and the day to day worry dampened our spirits for a while. Have things since eased a bit? Maybe, too early to say. We are though adjusting and within that, finding a renewed sense of creative energy flowing through us, helping to replenish an unattended soul garden.

So, come with us on this journey, yes, countered to this subdued introduction, I would like you to know that we are very excited, we are going on virtual tour!

THE TOUR ONLINE 2020 – 2021
tickets available HERE 

A year-long tour, two Saturdays each month, two shows each Saturdays to allow for different time zones, the whole world is invited, we transport ourselves live into wherever you are and perform.
Check dates below, times and tickets will be announced on our social media channels and updates on this website

We are The Kick Inside – The Songs of Kate Bush
Raf and O acoustic take (vocal, piano and double bass) celebrating early Kate Bush. For info, videos and more check  THE KICK INSIDE PAGE
now hosted within the Raf and O website

We are Raf and O
Four acclaimed albums to date and currently penning a new one, yes, this is happening too!! Check our releases on

We are Children Of The Bewlay Brothers
Having released interpretations of David Bowie Songs featured on three Raf and O albums, celebrated the man live on wonderful and prestigious occasions, as documented on several of these blogs and having dedicated an original song to him ‘A BOW TO BOWIE’ on latest album  ‘THE SPACE BETWEEN NOTHING AND DESIRE’ , the time has come to widen the circle. Raf and O as Children Of The Bewlay Brothers take on Raf and O interpretations together with extra renditions of the man who ‘sang himself to earth’ exploring his work through a Raf and O approach and beyond! Come and discover. Launching on Saturday 14th November!
A Special Surprise Every Show

26 September 2020
24 October 2020
28 November 2020
26 December 2020
23 January 2021
27 February 2021
27 March 2021
24 April 2021
22 May 2021
26 June 2021
24 July 2021
28 August 2021

10 October 2020
12 December 2020
13 February 2021
10 April 2021
12 June 2021
14 August 2021

14 November 2020
09 January 2021
13 March 2021
08 May 2021
10 July 2021
12 September 2021

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We made a couple of videos from the performance at Paper Dress Vintage hosted by the wonderful Mally Harpaz, multi-instrumentalist with Anna Calvi, it was a thorough pleasure to be part of that event, which now, after the whole series of events, feels like a lifetime ago! Videos were also sent in from the performances at West Kirby Arts Centre, again it was a great pleasure to join folks up there.
I’m including a couple down here. Thanks again to Mal Robinson and Margaret Stevie Baker for the footage. Enjoy!

We truly can’t wait to re-engage with you all live again and in our world of screen technology, we should all have a splendid time on THE TOUR ONLINE, details coming soon, please come join us on tour and follow us on our social media pages too, spread the word, we really need you right now!!

Much, much love from Raf and O X


Raf and O – Your Gazing Stare Live at Paper Dress Vintage

Raf and O as The Kick Inside – The Songs Of Kate Bush – The Man With The Child In His Eyes Live at West Kirby Arts Centre


“Haunting And Compelling” Raf And O Review & Interview on Pennyblackmusic + London Live Show with Mally Harpaz and with TKI At West Kirby Arts Centre

September 18, 2019 § Leave a comment


Raf and O Live t The Union Chapel, photo by Angelique Le Marchand at 3-Song Rule

Greetings! We have some exciting live news to announce and the latest from planet Raf and O!
Aside or probably more accurately orbiting around all current madness we’re seeking refuge in our music havens!

Raf and O are delighted to join Mally Harpaz on Tuesday September 24, an event presented by Blind Dog Studio at Paper Dress Vintage in London with Echo Wants Her Voice Back. There will also be some special guests.
Mally, multi instrumentalist with Anna Calvi, will be performing songs from her new album, Raf and O will  perform songs from the new album ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ and on the bill also singer songwriter Echo. Looking forward to this very special concert! Not to be missed!

On Friday, November 8, we are heading to the northwest, precisely to West Kirby Arts Centre, where we’ll be presenting both a long set by The Kick Inside with lots of beautiful early songs by Kate Bush and a specially selected Raf and O set.
TICKETS  on sale now!

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Raf and O Live at The Union Chapel, photo by Angelique Le Marchand at 3-Song Rule

The Kick Inside – The Songs of Kate Bush at The Penny Theatre, photo by Phill Morgan

Since the release of our new album ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’  which garnered some fantastic reviews, (see our previous blog) we were reviewed and interviewed in Pennyblackmusic Magazine, where both O and I talked to John Clarkson about our new album, the influence of David Bowie, The Kick Inside and Kate Bush, Scott Walker, Raf and O live, where are we from? And a few other things.
Read the whole interview here

“Raf and O are a defiantly original act, one which one can listen to time over and still find something new, and with ‘The Space Between Nothing and Desire’ they have created an album that is as daring as it is compelling”

This year marks 50 years of the Moon landing, 50 years of Space Oddity and 50 years since David Bowie performed at the Growth Beckenham Free Festival on the bandstand that has just received its Grade II Listing, the same bandstand appearing on the cover of our second album Time Machine and where we recorded ‘Echoes’ live (featuring on our ‘Portal’ album) at MOAFF in 2014. Proud to have played this festival three times since the remake back in 2013 and of course we celebrated in our own way, by releasing  ‘A Bow To Bowie’  our song dedicated to David featuring on the new album and receiving wonderful support from the likes of Electronic Sound, God Is In The TV Zine, Joe Muggs, Monolith Cocktail, Pennyblackmusic and Adrian Specs, a big thank you! And thanks to the Soap Company for inclusion on their best albums.

Don’t miss the upcoming concerts!

Spread the news!

With love

Raf and O X


“From the poignant to the provocative to the playful” Electronic Sound and More Reviews for Raf and O’s New Album ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ Out Now! ‘A Bow To Bowie’ Official Video + Live Video from the Launch

June 5, 2019 § Leave a comment


Raf and O’s New Album ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ (CD/Digital) is out now!! Watch ‘A Bow To Bowie’ Official Video above, which was premiered on God Is In The TV Zine and a Live Video from the Launch! Reviews keep coming and are just incredible, a big thank you to all, excited to let the album out into the world! Spread the word and get it here!
The two covers are included on our CD,  iTunes and other digital stores.

Buy Digital Album on iTunes
Buy CD Album on Bandcamp

“From the poignant to the provocative to the playful ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ is wonderfully theatrical and, unless you’re made of stone, quite irresistible .. It begins with ‘A Bow To Bowie’ an enthralling tribute to one of Raf & O’s main inspirations .. The intensity is off the scale”

“Stark and otherworldly, a haunting ode, subtle swelling bricolage of ghostly synths, tumbling acoustic notes and a bass drum that thuds like a heartbeat throughout. While Raf’s almost otherworldly almost jazz-like vocals spiral across the upper register with echoes of Kate Bush at her most avant-garde”

“This is a strange and luscious album”

“Sublime in execution, subtle but with a real depth and levity, TSBNAD is an astonishing piece of new romantic, avant-theater pop and electronica that dares to unlock the mind and fathom emotion, a masterclass of pulchritude magnificence. Imbued by both the musicality and spirit of David Bowie, Scott Walker, David Sylvian (both as a solo artist and with the fey romantics Japan), Kate Bush and in their most avant-garde mode, Bjork, the South London based duo of Raf (Raf Mantelli) and O (Richard Smith) occupy the perimeters of alternative art-rock and experimental electronica as the true inheritors of those cerebral inspirations”

An audio voyage that seems to bridge the gap between cosmos and earth as the record develops. ’A Bow to Bowie’ gazes explicitly heavenward, combining respectful, open sincerity with sheer intelligence and wit, absorbing musical and lyrical references to the song’s subject into a structure all their own. The title track is almost a battery-operated torch song, Raf’s sensual, almost swinging vocal conjuring up a kind of electronic chanson.” 

Thank you to Joe Muggs for featuring us on his radio show “The Wonderful Raf and O”! Thank you to Dexter Bentley for continued support, thank you to Bowie Wonderworld and thank you to all who made the Launch at Servant Jazz Quarters, it felt like an intimate and very special party. Hosted by dear friend Klarita from Kaparte Promotions, the event was filmed by Mal Robinson (watch the live video above) and photographed by Junko Rathmell (featured photo below) capturing the spirit of the night! Meanwhile The Kick Inside, our side project as interpretations of early Kate Bush, went down a storm in Birmingham, you can read about it on social media, keep in touch with the latest live appearances on The Kick Inside  FB page and of course Raf and O ‘s page! We’re also on Instagram, twitter, youtube, you name it!
The space between nothing and desire is already evolving … lots of new ideas are flourishing but for now, we are so proud to unleash into the world… 

The new album!

Come and get it we truly value your support!

More images below.


Raf and O X


Raf and O ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ Album Launch. Photo  © Junko Rathmell

Still from the Album Launch live footage by Mal Robinson.
Review of Raf and O’s New Album ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ in Electronic Sound

‘A Bow To Bowie’ Is Here and ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ Launches 26052019 + More Live Outings

April 2, 2019 § Leave a comment


Raf and O – A Bow To Bowie

He sang himself to Earth…
A Bow To Bowie Is here!

Truly excited to share this with you!
‘A Bow To Bowie’ and ‘A Mechanical Ride’ are available now together with pre-orders of The Space Between Nothing And Desire on Telephone Records.
Pre-Order Digital Album on iTunes
Pre-Order CD Album on Bandcamp


The Album Launch will be on Sunday 26th May in the intimate and elegant space of SJQ,  Servant Jazz Quarters, London, promoted by long time dear friend Klarita from Kaparte Promotions. We’re incredibly excited to be able to bring ’The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ live to you!
Tickets are on sale now!
Facebook Event

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Over the years Raf and O have expressed their affinity with Bowie and took on the task to reinterpret some of his songs, including ‘The London Boys’ which is part of the new album.
September saw the announcement of ABTB and on January 8th it was revealed to be ‘A Bow To Bowie’, written in December 2016.
“I really wanted to write a song for David after his passing, but it took me a few months before I felt I could tackle it” Raf Mantelli

With ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’ Raf and O go in search of a new quest: where, or, what is the space between nothing and desire? The primal concept that makes the world go round, desire, is abstract and yet so tangible, juxtaposed to nothing, equally as baffling, as to truly imagine it, it is impossible. With these parameters forming their chart, the latest album captures the duo navigating a journey into the senses, into the longing and the belonging.

Below the album tracklist:

1. A Bow To Bowie
2. The Space Between Nothing And Desire
3. Underwater Blue
4. Anger
5. Your Gazing Stare
6. A Mechanical Ride
7. Such A Small Love
8. With Fatzer
9. The Windmill
10. The London Boys
11. Haunted

‘Such A Small Love’ is a cover of Scott Walker recorded in September 2016.
Raf and O paid tribute to Walker last week as the news broke of his departure. Read here

Lovingly mastered at Trace. Big thanks to Mark Beazley.

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Raf and O live, Pennyblackmusic 20th anniversary at The Water Rats. Photo © Peter Tainsh

In February we were celebrating the latest live achievements which saw Raf and O in the latter part of 2018 alongside our other selves The Kick Inside, performing selective shows along the East Coast of England and surroundings including Manor House and theatre shows, as well as live appearances at the Klinker, Bethnal Green Working Mens Club and at the mighty PennyblackMusic 20th Anniversary held in the Water Rats quarters; the latter was John Clarkson’ s favourite show of 2018 whilst Raf and O as The Kick Inside – The Songs Of Kate Bush is in Adrian Ainsworth round-up of favourite live music of 2018.

“…An entrancing set of slanted, left-field songs that work their hazy magic on a drunken summer day. Comparisons to Broadcast, Stereolab, and even – yes – Kate Bush might help, but in reality Raf and O exist in their own, idiosyncratic universe, with a deeply unique sound that everyone should fall into for a while” Dominic Simpson, Pennyblackmusic.


7th April – Birmingham, Fletchers Bar – TICKETS 
18th May – West Kirby, The Wirral, West Kirby Arts Centre – TICKETS 
26th May – London, Servant Jazz Quarters – TICKETS

Live performances will also bring us to Birmingham on 7th April at Fletchers Bar with TKI and at West Kirby Arts Centre where we will perform both as TKI and Raf and O on Saturday 18th MayMore info and events on Raf and O and The Kick Inside FB pages.

Join us for the launch, it will be a very special night in London!
‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’… don’t miss!


Raf and O xx


Raf and O – ABTB 4 Letters for 4 Words + Mini Tour Coming Up!

September 12, 2018 § Leave a comment


Raf and O – ABTB

Greetings! we are very happy to announce that our next single is almost here!
ABTB, 4 letters for 4 words. To be revealed and to be unleashed as the days shorten … we are very excited!

And we are taking shows up and down the country, road testing some new pieces along the way. Raf and O and The Kick Inside are about to embark on a few gigs, crossing paths at times, like ships in the night! Kicking off at The Water Rats, London celebrating Pennyblackmusic magazine 20th Anniversary!

Tickets are on sale now, all details here below!

15th September – London, The Water Rats – TICKETS
22nd September – Sedgefield, Manor House – TICKETS
13th October – Lowestoft, The Seagull Theatre – TICKETS
20th October – Ealing, House Concert

22nd September – Sedgefield, Manor House – TICKETS
13th October – Lowestoft, The Seagull Theatre –  TICKETS
26th October – Canterbury, The Penny Theatre –  TICKETS

Facebook events can be found on our pages
Raf and O and The Kick Inside – The Songs Of Kate Bush

There’s an article on The Northern Echo for the upcoming show in County Durham and in view of this Saturday’s celebration, here’s an interview we did for Pennyblackmusic 2 years ago. And big thank you to The Pheasantry (Pizza Express Live) for hosting us last June, loved the Steinway!

Last month, it was very sad to learn about the passing of Lindsay Kemp. I feel very honoured to have met him two years ago and in chatting to him amongst other things how I spent a big part of my life in England just like he spent a good length of his time in Italy. A wonderful unique artist full of poetry and charm, also mentor to some of the best …David Bowie, Kate Bush… He’ll be sorely missed. (See on FB).

We’re both very much looking forward to perform and to bring you our latest efforts throughout the next few months!
See you at the shows!

Raf and O X

Gazing Ahead to The Space Between Nothing And Desire + Celebrating Kate Bush with The Kick Inside Launch and a Live Session on the DeXter Bentley Show

February 11, 2018 § Leave a comment


It’s 2018 and we’re kicking off with live activities again!

Kate Bush has given music lovers something to treasure: a great musician and producer, a brilliant composer and an amazing most unique voice. This year and month marks the 40th anniversary of Kate and her debut album. Adopting their name from this album,TKI or The Kick Inside, a tribute to Kate Bush by Raf and O (see previous blog), perform tracks from her early albums fully live, elegantly and stylishly capturing the energy, excitement and fragility of Kate’s music on vocals, piano and double bass. Celebrating Kate, The Kick Inside Launch, promoted by the always excellent Kaparte, is in London at Bar & Co, the club on a boat, Temple Pier, on Sunday 25th February. It is also O Richard’s birthday and Raf, will keep celebration on hold till then.

‘We’ll be playing a full show of Kate’s beautiful songs from the early part of her career. Triple celebration. Come!’

The launch is also featured on Kate Bush News and TKI has been described as:

’Strikingly individual’ Kate Bush News


And to kick start it all off, The Kick Inside will be playing live in session on the mighty deXter Bentley Show on London’s Resonance 104.4 FM, Saturday 17th February, 12pm which is the date marking Kate’s debut album 40 years ago!

We’re now gazing ahead to … and we’re very excited to introduce ‘The Space Between Nothing And Desire’. That is the title of Raf and O’s new album and it’s set to be released later this year!
A slice from the album was aired yesterday for the very first time on the  deXter Bentley Show: an edit preview of a brand new Raf and O song, ‘Your Gazing Stare’. The album will also include our version of David Bowie’s ’The London Boys’. We can’t say too much more at this stage, but keep your ears and eyes peeled, social media is always the quicker way to get fresh news!

Last November we even got to say thank you in person for the support Mike Garson had given to our version of Bowie’s Lady Grinning Soul back in 2013 after he played a magical show at the Camden Underworld!

Raf and O are now on Instagram too and we have unveiled a new logo, a moon-light reworking from our previous. Come and follow our new Instagram page here and here

See you down at THE KICK INSIDE LAUNCH. Come!

Raf and O Xx


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