The Ocean released not one, but two stellar albums last year in a double album series tackling Christianity’s negative influence on science called Heliocentric and Anthropocentric. Part of what made the records so brilliant was the lyrical subject matter and the haunting vocal melodies sung by frontman Loic Rossetti. Looking forward into the next year, The Ocean are preparing their follow-up, and it seems like we’ll be making a new journey without input from Rossetti. Not that he’s no longer a member, but because the next record in their discography will be purposefully instrumental. In an editorial piece on Metalsucks written by The Ocean mastermind Robin Staps in response Vince Neilstein’s claim that metal frontmen are irrelevant:

…although I don’t think our vocalist Loic is of the generic, uninspiring type you are attacking in your article — coincidentally, our new album (which is due for an April/May 2013 release on Metal Blade) will be largely or entirely instrumental. The reasons are manifold, but there simply is no space on this album, both from a musical as well as from a conceptual point of view, for lyrics and vocals. Loic is going to continue to be our vocalist, but the time is now right for instrumental metal. We need more of this.

This both excites me and bums me out. On one hand, I’m a big fan of Loic and his performance on Helio/Anthro, and as I said above, the lyrical content and the vocal melodies are what made the records a must-listen. On the other hand, the instrumental track ‘Wille Zum Untergang’ from Anthropocentric was an exceptional track and was able to evoke emotion from me in ways that most songs with a vocalist and lyrics never have before.

So I’m cautiously optimistic on where The Ocean go with this next record, and at the very least, it will be interesting. All eyes on Spring 2013!

– JR

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