Our Oceans While Time Disappears Delves Into New Mediums
Prog-rockers from the Netherlands, Our Oceans are back with a full-flavored sophomore album. Come November 27th through Long Branch Records, you can expect to hear even more singer-songwriter elements on While Time Disappears.
Compared to their debut album, the vocal lines are more in the forefront of the songs than the other instruments. And Tymon Kruidenier’s voice range reaches incredible new heights and characteristics.
The album opener “Unravel” showcases one of Kruidenier’s new vocal tones- a raspy scream towards the mid-range. The song overall is dynamic. Towards the end after the heaviest part, it settles to some synths with a feeling of suspension. Then clean guitar chords accompanied with a crescendo of a ride cymbal bursts into a jazz fusion guitar solo. The chorus in this one became catchy a memorable first listen.
On the next number “Weeping Lead” you can hear hints of the familiar and welcoming sound of Exivious at the 2:42 minute mark.
My favorite track of the album would have to be “Motherly Flame”. It magically weaves back and forth from darkness to captivating bliss. The capability to evoke such dualism in a short amount of time and still be musical is a difficult task to pull off. The greatest thing to me about this song is the verse build up with the vocal melodies right before the chorus. The soundscape gives a visual of soaring over a coastline with clear skies and not a single worry in the world.
The most heartfelt piece would have to be “Passing By”. It starts off melancholic with vulnerable lyrical content and symbolism. Kruidenier’s voice is moving and mind-blowing with his keen sense of tonality range. The song picks up towards the end with a powerful outro groove.
Coming to the second half of this album, it honestly didn’t resonate with me as much. That being said, this part of the album is still unique and undeniably well crafted. The overall vibe may be a little different than the first half with going down new avenues of sound for Our Oceans.
“Face Them” is a sporadic upbeat tempo one that reminds me of mid-era The Mars Volta. A twist and turn frenzy with a distorted bass guitar with interesting lines. There is also a whacky funk guitar solo that widens Kruidenier’s elaborate guitar work.
“With Hands Torn Open” is the last track of the album and is one that eventually grew on me after many plays. There are exotic time signatures and rhythms from the skillful drummer Yuma van Eekelen here. Another notable thing is the extravagant guitar slide solo has a slight Egyptian sound to it.
While Time Disappears mix seems to be stripped down but in a good way. Nothing seems overly produced or compressed. Everything breathes naturally and each band member shines new light in their eclectic sound.
No matter how spastic some of the songs may come off, they eventually come to a home base or encompassing resolution. Our Oceans are all about displaying peaks and valleys.Fresh textures are now implemented in their expression and I am eager more than ever to see them live one day.
Score- 9 out of 10
Author: Tom Sundgren