The Ocean
Fogdiver


4.5
superb

Review

by JAV USER (12 Reviews)
January 13th, 2009 | 26 replies | 9,398 views


Release Date: 2003 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The storm was about to swoop down on us, and already the sky was growing dark, overcast in a black almost as hideous as the human heart.

4 of 5 thought this review was well written

Before the sprawling concept albums Precambrian and Fluxion/Aeolian, The Ocean released this EP of instrumental tracks that hinted at what the possibilities of the future and solid time as a band could bring. While the EP is only 5 songs it’s longer than some bands full albums clocking in around 30 minutes with 2 tracks nearing the 9 minute mark. As with Fluxion these song structures, at their base, follow more of a subdued serenity then build to a crescendo of fury before it all comes crashing inward.

The title track catches you with an aggressive riff that commands your attention and holds on before slowing and bringing in a change of pace to keep things fresh. Not every track follows this pattern; Endusers is calm watery passage that never feels like much more than drifting along with the tide. The Ocean tries not to make every song sound too similar frequently changing how the songs are structured. Some bands rely on the soft-loud-soft or loud-soft-loud format so much that the music is dull or predictable by the time you get a few tracks in. The use of dynamics is beautifully done along with interesting guitar melodies, drumming that contains many varying patterns and bass lines that can stand on their own. The best example of this is The Long Road to Nha Trang. It shows aggression, restraint and once the ambiance hits you’re thinking, “Ok here comes the obligatory wall of fury raining down on you”, but not this time. Out of nowhere you get bitch-slapped by a catchy piano roll with a rumbling bass drop.

The creativity shown on this album is stifling and is a great introduction to the band without the barbaric vocals turning away some listeners since the only vocals found here are sound clips placed underneath the instrumentals. The sparse use violins and incorporation of orchestral instruments not normally found on metal records conveys a willingness to experiment with their sound without reaching pretentious levels. It’s not the cutthroat frenzy and range of styles found on Aeolian/Hadean or the grandiose instrumentation of Fluxion/Proterozoic but it doesn’t get weighed down by its own aspirations of what it wants to or could be. It’s focused; striving for originality and usually achieves it.



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user ratings (100)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
gaslightanthem
January 13th 2009



5209 Comments


cool band, cool review

Burn2Burn
January 13th 2009



2378 Comments


Out of nowhere you get bitch-slapped by a catchy piano roll with a rumbling bass drop.

Nice.

So this is purely instrumental then?

JAV
January 13th 2009



1923 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Pretty much. There are a few samples but they're sparse.This Message Edited On 01.13.09

BrahTheSunGod
December 25th 2009



1279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is criminally underrated

TRMshadow
December 25th 2009



4982 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Everything they do is criminally underrated.

BrahTheSunGod
December 25th 2009



1279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

^Completely agree. Hadn't heard of them til like a week ago, got their whole discography, and now can't stop listening to them. Seriously I don't think there's a CD by them that I'd put below a 4, except maybe the first CD of Precambrian.

TRMshadow
December 25th 2009



4982 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Really? Generally the precambrian set is regarded as their masterwork.

qwe3
December 25th 2009



21355 Comments


precambrian is pretty good. haven't heard this though

BrahTheSunGod
December 27th 2009



1279 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Qwe, get this, it's worth it especially if you liked Precambrian. Reminds me creepily of motW in some places, so you'd probably enjoy it.

The second CD, the one (Proterozoic) where they stop trying to be so metuul and branch out into their more melodic, post-metalish side, is a masterpiece and absolutely amazing, a 5 for sure. First one, (Hadean/Archaean), I feel like sacrifices the melody to try to be heavy/crushing, which is still good but not my personal preference.

TRMshadow
December 30th 2009



4982 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I just bought the discography too (Except for Precambrian, I had 60 free downloads with napster and I want Precambrian in CD form). This is awesome, not as good as Precambrian and not warranting a 5 rating, but still an awesome EP.

TRMshadow
January 14th 2010



4982 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This may be my favorite Ocean release other than Precambrian.

JAV
January 14th 2010



1923 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I have to agree with you there.

mdross95
February 14th 2010



10 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Agree with Brah; The first CD of Precambrian is more like your run-of-the-mill metal album. It's definitely not bad music but I personally just don't like it. But the second CD is a masterpiece IMO.

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
November 6th 2010



20749 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great stuff on here

Digging: Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails

JAV
December 10th 2010



1923 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

First random neg oh schweet, it's like popping a cherry.

Shuyin
March 1st 2012



11421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

ended so fast, great stuff

Digging: Integral - Sercosa

pedro70512
December 15th 2012



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

what moron negged this? great descriptions and good rev length, pos. I've been on the fence about getting this for a while but you convinced me.

Shuyin
December 16th 2012



11421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

welcome to sputnik

JAV
December 16th 2012



1923 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Sometimes I do good.
One day I'll write something else.

TheMoreira
August 1st 2013



7097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Ok so this is beautiful. Unlike Islands/Tides, which is, in my humble opinion, a very mediocre release that somehow gets positive scores. I feel like it's a mess really. But someone saw something there, as they got signed for it. I guess i'm the one missing the point of it.

But this... this surprised me greatly.

Digging: Ulcerate - The Destroyers of All



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