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Oceansize - Everyone Into Position CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.05 | 282 ratings

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Queen By-Tor
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars If Kevin Moore fronted Tool... They might sound a bit like this.

Oceansize's second cd, Everyone Into Position, is an excellent mix of pseudo-electronics and heavy rock with a bit of indie, metal and a healthy scoop of prog added. Most easily compared (as others have noted) in soundscape to a band like Tool it's also quite easy to compare them to the style of Kevin Moore's (ex-Dream Theater) solo projects such as Chroma Key and his new supergroup, OSI. Slightly fast but mostly mid-paced music with interesting time signatures and stellar instrumentation make this cd a very worthy listen.

Starting with the heavy THE CHARM OFFENSIVE the album starts on it's way. The dark riff that opens the track eventually leads us into the lo-key yet effective vocals which proceed to lull the audience for a minute until the song kicks it into high gear. The guitars become heavier and heavier until the first chorus when everything comes almost to a halt, ''everyone into position...'' and the song moves on it's way once more. Here we have an excellent track that does a truly excellent job of introducing the album as it's going to be for the rest of the duration. HEAVEN ALIVE starts a bit fast and with a bit more oomph than it's predecessor after a bit of pseudo-Egyptian sounding noises open the track. This song is a bit more geared towards rock with its almost screaming chorus section and its less subdued guitars. An excellent track, if a bit simpler in sound than the first song, this one is for the rockers. Going even heavier than the first two is the next track, HOMAGE TO A SHAME. Opening with a chaotic blast of guitar and rhythm the vocals come in with even more aggression than before and lead the track. This is one of the shorter songs on the album with one of the most clearly defined sing-along choruses which may not appeal to every prog-head, but it's good anyways.

Heavier and heavier the album goes, are they just going to keep going this way until they explode?

Luckily no. The next couple tracks come back down to earth with a lot more melody and structure in mind. MEREDITH is a brooding track with soundscapes along the lines of something out of Porcupine Tree's more recent stuff mixed with a little of their early Psych stuff. More subdued vocals and guitars with a highlighted bass and rhythm section make this track something very interesting. MUSIC FOR A NURSE is along the same lines -- Slow and subdued, this track winds it's way along feeling more human and emotional than anything on the disc thus far.

Then the music makes a change again.

Here is where the Kevin Moore comparisons really start to kick in. NEW PIN is a song with electronic leanings that sounds like something off of a Chroma Key or OSI album. Mike Vennart even starts to sound like Kevin Moore with his powerful yet subtle voice. With excellent pace and segments of music this song becomes a clean standout. NO TOMORROW is along this same style, this time getting heavier. Less electronically inclined and with a screaming section at the chorus with a couple very melodic sections this is a track that works well from any angle.

Slowing back down again, and again sounding a lot like a Kevin Moore project is the shortest song on the album, MINE HOST. Clocking at a mere 4:10, this lightweight (on the album anyways) is somewhat easy to overlook. But like many of the slow songs on this album the human feel to it makes it quite memorable after repeated listens. Coming to the end of the album YOU CAN'T KEEP A BAD MAN DOWN starts to gets things on the heavy side again. Vocals less subdued and guitars starting to rock out this track is one of the heaviest on the album. With some excellent speed changes and slow parts this song would have made a satisfying end to one great album... but they had to take it a step further.

The greatest standout by a wide margin (and the longest song as well) is the coda track ORNAMENT/THE LAST WRONGS. An excellent mix of everything that Oceansize does well, this track is what makes the entire CD worth it (even if the rest of the album as already incredible). The ORNAMENT segment of the track is a slow and beautiful instrumental that is truly serene while the LAST WRONGS has such a marvelous vocal melody that it's easy to lose track to time and space simply listening to it.

Looking at the cover one might think that this is the newest Ska CD on the block, but don't be fooled. This is one of the better prog releases by a new band this side of the millennium. Definitely worth every penny and second of listening, this is one that most should have in their collection. Not a masterpiece but darn close, this one gets 4 stars. Recommended for everyone, but especially recommended for people who have a love for some of the band's they're compared to (OSI, Tool, Porcupine Tree).

Queen By-Tor | 4/5 |


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