Artist: Being As An Ocean
Album: Dear G-d...
Release Date: October 23rd, 2012
Label: InVogue Records
From the first time I heard them, I knew Being As An Ocean were something special. In a scene so cluttered with copycat bands with no creativity, the five piece from Alpine, California really stand out. No, they're not completely original, but take cues from bands anywhere from La Dispute and Touche Amore to Sigur Ros and Explosions in the Sky, resulting in an emotional brand of ambient-laced hardcore.
Dear G-d... starts off with the pulsing riffs of "Nothing, Save The Power They're Given," declaring "These words might mean nothing, but it's a chance I'm willing to take, cause maybe I'm wrong and lives can change." The album's title track \searches for meaning and hope ("I'm trying my best to be a better man, despite all my fears I really am"), while "The Hardest Part Is Forgetting Those You Swore You Would Never Forget" finds vocalist Joel Quartuccio screaming his heart out about the pains of love lost, a purely heartbreaking affair. "This Loneliness Won't Be The End of Me" serves as an anthem of the broken yearning for love and God, with a spoken word, post-rock section that gives chills.
"The Sea Always Seems To Put Me At Ease" and "If They're Not Counted, Count Me Out" serve as the album's two spoken word pieces, backed by a majestic post-rock ambiance, while "It's Not Really As Complicated As You're Making It Out To Be" hits mid-album, an 11 minute instrumental track with a small section of a Ghandi speech about God. Following up are a few heavier, punk-infused tracks, such as "This Room Is Alive" and "We Will Never Be The Same," while "Humble Servant, Am I" sporadically strikes with an aggressive breakdown, the album's one and only, showing that good hardcore music isn't all about breakdowns and heaviness, but instead heart and passion, well illustrated throughout the whole of Dear G-d....
Overall: For me, Being As An Ocean's Dear G-d... has been one of the year's biggest surprises. Musically, Dear G-d... is refreshing and the lyrics are equally inspirational and hard hitting, not holding anything back, and while the album's not perfect, it comes close, remarkable for a debut. Fans of Touche Amore, La Dispute and Defeater, and perhaps those who have grown tired of the cliche breakdowns and repetitive chugging of much of the hardcore scene today will certainly find something to enjoy here.
Reviewed by Brooks Ginnan
- Nothing, Save The Power They're Given
- Dear G-d
- The Hardest Part Is Forgetting Those You Swore You Would Never Forget
- This Loneliness Won't Be The Death of Me
- The Sea Always Seems To Put Me At Ease
- Salute e Vita
- It's Really Not As Complicated As You're Making It Out To Be
- Humble Servant, Am I
- This Room Is Alive
- We Will Never Be The Same
- If They're Not Counted, Count Me Out
About the Author
Brooks Ginnan is the editor of Exiled Music Press. He is usually crying over the fact that we will never see a reunion of The Smiths or Cocteau Twins.