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Album Review

We Are The Ocean – Ark

We Are The Ocean - ARK

A little confusing identity-wise, a bit of a hodge-podge in terms of creating a fluid album, but still damn good.

Label:  BMG Chrysalis/Hassle Records
Released: 11th May 2015

Rating: ★★★

Ambition isn’t always synonymous with success, but once in a while, a band take a great swing at something bigger and manage to smash it. Case in point: We Are The Ocean, who’ve successfully moved on from their post-hardcore roots to evolve into an all-encompassing rock band.

‘Ark’ is a cinematic masterpiece, a little bit of Muse, and a little bit of lofty ambition before ‘I Wanna Be’ inexplicably launches into the roller coaster of punk, repetition and backing vocalists bringing a little swing to the chorus. By ‘Good For You’ they’ve shifted to Queens of the Stone Age with touches of Alex Turner twanging from Liam Cromby’s mouth.

Three songs in, and the territory traversed makes it difficult to put comfortably under one umbrella term, but if anything, it’s a thrill ride. ‘Do It Together’ bursts forth in a gnarly ball of attitude, while ‘Letter To Michael’ might as well have the band sitting on a porch step in the country, reminiscing quietly, such is the leap to get to this mellow track. ‘There’s Nothing Wrong’, summery and emotive, is the soundtrack to the coming-of-age revelation in something like the OC. Seriously.

But ‘Wild’ is where it truly screams We Are The Ocean, that growth over the years consolidated into one explosive burst. This is the breakthrough so eagerly awaited – crisp and clear amidst the continued battle of influences. They’re the kids at a sweet shop wanting a little bit of everything – ‘Ark’ is a testament to how confidently they can pull off this new mix.

It can be a little confusing identity-wise, and it might be a bit of a hodge-podge in terms of creating a fluid album, but it’s still damn good. Heather McDaid