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The Ocean - Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic CD (album) cover


The Ocean


Experimental/Post Metal

3.95 | 95 ratings

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4 stars My introduction to this eclectic prog metal band from Germany. You'll want to hear this one for yourselves. It's good!

1. "Triassic" (8:31) slow, spaced out electric guitar strums accompanied by flutey-trumpet sound are soon joined by bass, low synths, stick percussion, and drums. Very cool development and build as chunky goes into an early, pre- singing solo. Singing doesn't even begin until the third minute as sticks, strums and chugging GENESIS Duke-like rhythm guitar back robotic multi-voice vocals. Very cool! Brief growled chorus before moving back into the same motif for the second verse. The second time through the chorus sees a drawing out of the growls--this time being antiphoned by the robotic choir--before we trans into an instrumental section for two-tracks of guitars soloing. Near the six-minute mark we move back into the chorus--version II with robot voices answering/alternating with growler. Then the growler gets complete lead for the 7:00 mark until finally being rejoined by the robot voices and then returning to a repeat of the two-guitar instrumental section. Brilliant song! (19/20)

2. "Jurassic | Cretaceous" (13:24) Part TOOL, part LEPROUS, big part OPETH, there is enough refreshing creativity here to make me want to listen and like this music, but, in the end, aside from its lyrics and despite it's awesome intro, it is 80% rehashing what other Death Metal bands have done before. (26.25/30)

3. "Palaeocene" (4:00) standard growl death metal. Aside from the lyrics, there's nothing new here. (7.75/10)

4. "Eocene" (3:57) using a different singer with a more melodic, gentle, KEVIN MOORE/CHROMA KEY-like approach-- until the chorus, then it turns more like Bath/Leaving Your Body Map-era MAUDLIN OF THE WELL. The second verse sounds more like French band KLONE. Well done, if lacking any real climax. (9/10)

5. "Oligocene" (4:00) ANATHEMA or VOTUM-like atmospheric opening has me tuned in. Completely. Now this is a band I could follow! (9.5/10)

6. "Miocene | Pliocene" (4:40) steady psych/kosmische music over which vocalist growl-screams his message. I like the fact that he's singing slowly enough that I can understand his lyrics. (They're in English). The chorus is interestingly in a multi-track vocal format that sounds incredibly similar to LINKIN PARK. For music/songs like this I can tolerate the growling vocal deliveries. (9/10)

7. "Pleistocene" (6:40) more KEVIN MOORE/OSI like pulsing music over which the LINKIN PARK voice sings plaintively (or like a human Einar Solberg (LEPROUS). Growls scream the chorus. Second verse has high-pitched upper octave background singer mirroring the lyrics and lead vocalist's melody. After the second verse the music amps up and shifts into a slightly higher gear (third and, later, fourth)) while growler likewise increases the emotion behind his rant. It's effective! The chord play around the 6:00 mark is straight out of the LEPROUS/PROGHMA-C handbook. Nice ending and, though interesting and creative, overall it somehow falls a little short of great. (8.75/10)

8. "Holocene" (5:47) a steady, pleasurable song that has an OSI, TONY PATTERSON, or LUNATIC SOUL feel and sound to it. It keeps me engaged but disappoints in its failure to intensify and/or climax or resolve. (8.75/10)

Total Time 50:59

B+/4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of creative, inventive heavy progressive rock or experimental/post metal music. Definitely highly recommended for every prog lover to to check out.

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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