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The Ocean Collective: Phanerozoic 1: Palaeozoic

The German ensemble known as The Ocean Collective have been one of the more unique acts on the metal scene since their debut back in the early 2000s. More a revolving door of musicians than an actual cohesive 'band', the 'collective' tag at the end of The Ocean kind of fits this constantly shifting cast, which is always led by guitarist Robin Staps and has also featured vocalist Loïc Rossetti since 2009, and in more recent years drummer Paul Seidel and bassist Mattias Hägerstrand. After a number of years supporting their previous epic Pelagial (released in 2013), the band are back with their latest release for Metal Blade Records, the first of another multi-part series, Phanerozoic 1: Palaeozoic.

Combining progressive metal with hardcore, ambient/electronic, post rock, and sludge, The Ocean Collective have a style that might not be instantly accessible, but their music has always contained many layers, colors, and certainly moods, in which Phanerozoic 1: Palaeozoic does not deviate from that formula. Containing seven tracks, four of which top the 7-minute mark, The Ocean Collective have crafted some intriguing songs here that feature an assortment of heavy riffs, tranquil atmosphere, some bubbling electronic passages, and moments of beautiful melody as well as savage brutality. Clean & screamed vocals combat each other on the dramatic "Silurian: Age of Sea Scorpions", supported by cello, booming guitar & bass riffs, and gorgeous keyboard tapestries. Fans of Anathema will love the brooding beauty of "Devonian: Nascent", while the bands mix of progressive metal with spacey ambient soundscapes comes full force on the powerful closer "Permian: The Great Dying". Those who prefer the more extreme side of the band will enjoy the crushing "Cambrian II: Eternal Recurrence", another lengthy tune here that showcases both the harsh screaming and the soaring melodic vocal attack, with bombastic riffs and a tumultuous drum barrage only tempered by some haunting keys.

Overall, Phanerozoic 1: Palaeozoic is a great listen, another powerful statement from The Ocean Collective that will leave you hungry to see where part two of this saga goes.

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing
1. The Cambrian Explosion
2. Cambrian II: Eternal Recurrence
3. Ordovicium: The Glaciation of Gondwana
4. Silurian: Age of Sea Scorpions
5. Devonian: Nascent
6. The Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse
7. Permian: The Great Dying

Added: October 27th 2018
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1175
Language: english

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