For Fans Of
Being As An Ocean are quickly blazing the trail to becoming one of the world’s most renowned and hardworking melodic hardcore acts; and there is a reason for that. (Relatively) Fresh off an Australian tour with UK hardcore heavyweights Architects and embarking on the US Vans Warped Tour, Being As An Ocean haven’t allowed the dust to settle before releasing this mammoth of an album upon eager fans of the band and genre alike.
From the opening track, ‘Little Richie’, the self-titled album starts at a dirty and honest pace that does not stop until the final note of its climax song. The record truly is like a rollercoaster that builds you up, only to throw you into electronic themes, a soaring chorus or extremely heavy, death style roars that you wouldn’t otherwise find in the genre. The full-length could be considered a landmark for the contemporary melodic hardcore uprising, tracks such as the band’s third single ‘Forgetting Is Forgiving The I’ hold the classic elements to being a well loved anthem.
The self-titled effort is a raw, stripped-back and emotional piece of work. It is as powerful as it is poetic. Lyrically, the album is gritty and passionate as vocalist and lyricist Joel Quartuccio proves that he is more than a competent frontman. Powerful screams echo throughout the release, complemented by an even more emotional singing voice (courtesy of rhythm guitarist, Michael McGough) that serenades over harsh melody. The Californian quintet callback to the glory days of post-hardcore with their honest brand of music, melodic riffs, blistering drums and belting yells that paint the atmosphere with themes of melancholy and harsh reality. Instrumentally, the self-titled is superb, the guitar work of both Tyler Ross and Michael McGough are at times thrash-y and brutal while still retaining the raw and melancholic feel. The pounding drums and thundering, and sometimes progressive and complex bass (‘Ain’t Nobody Perfect‘ features an amazing bass section during its breakdown) add an extra layer of feel to the atmosphere and all together it resonates really well. Being As An Ocean are most definitely a unit that complements each other very well, and they’ve proved it once again.
An important part of this band are their lyrics; penned by Quartuccio, they remain poetic and raw as you would expect from a melodic hardcore band. Reminiscent of peers such as La Dispute and Pianos Become The Teeth, the lyricism behind the album has an overall dark tone to it. Thematically, issues of forgiveness, abuse and even personal beliefs about love, religion and God, seeing as the band has underlying Christian tones, feature. One solid example of the powerful vocal and lyrical delivery is found at the breakdown of the aforementioned ‘Ain’t Nobody Perfect‘ when Quartuccio speaks and screams, “I tried my best… to forgive you… I’m so sorry” While the Christian elements may scare some listeners away, it adds to the tone of the album and does not detract one bit from the music itself. It’s never preachy or too devout, and is rather welcomed, at least by the reviewer. The production throughout is rather impressive; produced by personal friend of the band Matt McClellan, he has done an outstanding job on ‘Being As An Ocean’, from the tones of the guitars, the clean grit of the vocals or the slight production tweaks such as the electronic elements present within the album from time to time.
Stand out tracks include the lead single, ‘Little Richie’, about the frontman’s personal friend and pastor learning to forgive the people who have abused him during childhood, an emotionally weighted track that delivers in raw aggression as well as having a clean, electronic style bridge, which calms the song down. Additionally, tracks such as ‘St. Peter’, which opens with spoken word and beautifully haunting piano before soaring into a melodic song hook, rings true to the genre and will have fans more than impressed with what these guys can churn out.
Being As An Ocean continue to prove that they are fast on their way to becoming one of the biggest bands in the melodic hardcore genre. Their latest offering shows the expansion of their style, the growth they’ve made while still retaining their old feel. The tracks on the album are superb and we eagerly await to hear what they sound like live.
1. Little Richie
2. Ain’t Nobody Perfect
3. The Zealot’s Blindfold
4. Sleeping Sicarii
5. Judas, Our Brother
6. St. Peter
7. Forgetting Is Forgiving The I
8. The World As A Stage
9. Sins Of The Father
10. …And Their Consequence