The last live show I attended was on February 22nd, 2020 watching Opeth at the Apollo Theater in New York City. It was a magical night, but little did I know that was going to be the last live music I was going to be watching perform in a year. I miss live shows, as I’m sure every single one of you does as well and I was particularly reminded of this since the beginning of last week. Having said that, when The Ocean Collective announced that they were going to play a live stream show of their amazing album Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic (Pelagic Records) in its entirety, I immediately jumped to my feet and said: “I NEED to watch that”, I knew it was going to be magical as everything the German band does.
Instead of reminding everyone of the horrible year we’ve had by sharing this list of my top 20 albums of 2020 with all of you, I want to think that I am sharing new music that can keep being an outlet to rely on when times are tough. We’re in a moment in time where we’re all vulnerable and music keeps being one of the best tools to help our mental health. The following albums are the ones that helped me go through the year and I hope you find something that you can add to your playlist and enjoy it as much as I do. Within each album, there is the country, genre, and their Bandcamp links (for those that have Bandcamp) in case you want to directly support them in these troubled times.
As we draw down (the moon) on our reveal of the top seventy-five albums of the year, as voted for by the cast, crew, and alumni of this fine rock, metal, punk, hardcore and indie-focused site, we can take a moment to reflect on the power of heavy music, and that every one of the seventy-five albums we are celebrating and acknowledging will have had a positive impact on several of our team and readers.Continue reading
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Consistency is the best word that can be used to describe a band like The Ocean. After releasing the critically acclaimed album Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic (Metal Blade Records/Pelagic Records) in 2018, the Germans come back with can possibly be a solid candidate for album of the year in Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic (Metal Blade Records/Pelagic Records). And it’s just that this band keeps raising the musical and creative bars that are out there. They are not afraid to crush any musical barriers and do love to delve into unknown territories and as a result, they always come out on the winning end of it.
It’s been five years since Pelagial, the last album from German harsh progressives The Ocean. The quartet, again referring to themselves as The Ocean Collective and now with Mattias Hagerstrand on bass duties, is renowned for its prolific output as well as incendiary live shows, so the anticipation for eighth studio album Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic (Metal Blade Records) is huge.Continue reading
The Ocean Collective (sometimes just referred to just as The Ocean) have shared the second single from their massive new album Phanerozoic I, coming soon from Metal Blade Records. ‘Devonian: Nascent’ is a killer track and features Jonas Renkse of Katatonia on vocals. Jam it out now.Continue reading
Post-metal greats The Ocean have announced their new double album, their 8th, later this year from their own imprint Pelagic Records. Phanerozoic will come in two parts, over the next two years, and will be the follow up to 2013’s epic Pelagial. The band has stated that their recently reissued 2007 Precambrian is the reference point for the new music. Continue reading
Post-metal masters The Ocean and avant-garde rockers Mono are releasing a split EP together this fall on Metal Blade dubbed Transcendental. Comprised of one song from each band, the release will run 24 minutes in total length, with one long composition from each band. LA-based German cover artist Florian Bertmer was commissioned to create the cover art based on the themes of the album. The split EP will be released on a single 12″ slab of vinyl in different colours, as well as on CD and digitally worldwide through Pelagic Records. The past touring partners will also undertake a new string of live dates together as well to celebrate the release.
The Ocean’s contribution, a 13 minute song entitled ‘The Quiet Observer’, was inspired by Gaspard Noe’s controversial movie Enter The Void. The main character of the song enters what is referred to as the “intermediate state” according to the Bardo Thodol, the “Tibetan Book Of The Dead”. The track will also mark the recording debut of new band members for The Ocean: drummer Paul Seidel, and Australian guitarist Damian Murdoch. Also filling out the lineup will be cello player Dalai Theofilopoulou and piano player Vincent Membrez, who already played on Pelagial. This extended lineup will be seen on the upcoming tour.
Mono’s track will be an 11-minutes song, ‘Death in Reverse’. The song serves as a trailer for the upcoming 9th Mono album, coming in early 2016 release via Pelagic Records.
Guitarist and main song writer Takaakira Goto comments:
“The theme of this track is life and death and regeneration. Even when our bodies decay and decompose, our souls will prevail unchanged. Our bodies will act as seeds for the next generation, while our souls will journey together into our new eternal life. This is the story we want to explore with our next album, a portrayal of our journey through life towards death; from living out our lives proud and high, to bodies immolating, infused with precious memories… and through the vast, noisy tunnel of space, we become pure souls – a single drop of water in the fountain of life.”
The Ocean and Mono tour dates:
Oct 12: Voxhall – Aarhus, DK
Oct 13 Vulkan Arena – Oslo, NO
Oct 14 Debaser Medis – Stockholm, SE
Oct 16 Klubi – Turku, FI
Oct 17 The Circus – Helsinki, FI
Oct 18 Zal Ozhidaniya – St. Petersburg, RU
Oct 19 Volta – Moscow, RU
Oct 21 New York – Vilnius, LT
Oct 22 Proxima – Warsaw, PL
Oct 23 Heimathafen – Berlin, DE
Oct 24 Romein (Into the Void)- Leeuwarden, NL
Oct 25 Trix – Antwerp, BE
Oct 26 Live Music Hall – Cologne, DE
Oct 27 Schlachthof -Wiesbaden, DE
Oct 28 Backstage – Munich, DE
Oct 29 Locomotiv – Bologna, IT
Oct 30 Bloom – Mezzago, IT
Oct 31 CCO Villeurbanne – Lyon, FR
Nov 01 Bikini – Barcelona, ES
Nov 02 Le Metronum – Toulouse, FR
Nov 03 Les Docks – Lausanne, CH
Nov 04 Harterei – Zurich CH
Nov 05 Trabendo – Paris, FR
Nov 06 Electric Ballroom – London, GB
Nov 07 Damnation Fest – Leeds, GB
Nov 08 Fuzz Clubb – Athens, GR
Nov 09 Garajistanbul – Istanbul, TR
The Ocean online
In a bizarre turn of events, German prog metallers The Ocean Collective have been held hostage by security at their hotel in Bangalore, throwing their gig in the city into doubt. The German five piece were allegedly assaulted by hotel security when they tried to leave the hotel and held there for three hours. The incident arose when sponsors of the gig in India Kingfisher failed to pay the bands hotel room. However after three hours and the intervention of the German embassy the incident has been resolved and the bands show will go ahead this evening.
We are not sure if tonight’s show in Bangalore can go on as planned, as we are currently being held hostage (yes, that’s precisely what it is) at MATTHAN HOTEL, because apparently KINGFISHER, India’s largest beer company and sole sponsor of the festival we were supposed to play on Saturday but didn’t, has still not paid our hotel bill. We have been physically assaulted by hotel security when trying to leave the premises – the German embassy is involved now.
We are very sorry again for all this, people of Bangalore- we want to play for you, but at this moment, it is not even sure if we can catch our return flights later tonight. We will keep you posted! Cross your fingers! Rock N’ Roll!
The show is happening! After being stuck at our hotel for 3 hours, the German embassy sorted things out within 20 minutes… props to those guys! We are currently at the venue (Vapour) and will have a quick soundcheck now, doors at 7.30. We’ve had a mad day, come drink some bloody maries with us on the rooftop terrace before we fly out tonight at 3 AM !!!!!