A plate spinning tirade of modern metallic flavours, ‘Lost Isles’ is a seething, gale force sonic storm of a debut. Taking us on a scorched earth thrill ride between all four corners of contemporary metal’s rich tapesty, Oceans Ate Alaska‘s strident disregard for the rulebook may take a minute to digest, yet once we pass up any notions of box fitting and pigeon holing, the Brummie quintet’s bug-eyed violence takes form as a thoroughly hair-raising delight.
With ruinous slo-mo chug-a-lug brutality colliding with some abrasive technical bluster and a healthy dose of ‘what the fuck’ harmonic showboating, the likes of ‘Blood Brothers’ and a murderous ‘High Horse’ employ the kitchen sink approach to devastating effect, these death-jazz mini symphonies clattering back and forth between brief melodic respites and crippling rhythmic hostility.
Thankfully, beyond state of the art instrumental whirlwind and depth charge heaviousity, ‘Lost Isles’ songwriting artillery manages to remain oddly coherent. Big chorus polish abounds, with ‘Floorboards’ the pick of the bunch as it merges from SikTh-esque savagery to some earnestly emotive hooks straight out of the today’s alt rock textbook, and slight touches of modern day Bring Me The Horizon (‘Mirage’) and some electronically illuminated soundscapes (‘Equinox’), all provide additional strings to Ocean Ate Alaska‘s already rather crowded bow. A stupendous first outing.
Written by Tony Bliss (@TBliss88)