The Ocean Fluxion

The Ocean Fluxion
Having released easily one of the strongest albums of 2007 with Precambrian, the Ocean Collective have seen fit to reissue one of their earlier full-lengths, 2004's Fluxion. For those unfamiliar, the Ocean are a rotating collective of musicians that play a highly progressive form of metalcore with post-metal elements. While newer listeners are accustomed to their revolving-door vocalist policy, sometimes within the same track, Fluxion features only one lead vocalist, giving it a more cohesive, yet conventional, feel. The album was initially recorded as the first disc of two (the second of which became follow-up Aeolian) and explores the more cinematic, epic side of their multifaceted take on the genre. Tastefully utilizing a full orchestra throughout the disc is something few bands would tackle for a sophomore effort but the Ocean are up to the challenge. Tipping their hat to the NeurIsis school somewhat derivatively, Fluxion's only weak moments come when they include haphazardly placed homages to other established artists. That said, with so many ideas being brought to the table, it's understandable that not all of them are particularly innovative. While the Ocean's songwriting and thematic cohesiveness would improve later on, Fluxion documents a group light-years ahead of where less talented and ambitious acts are at that point in their careers, and is well worth a purchase for fans. (Metal Blade)