I wait with baited breath, my arms shaking like an electrocuted Muhammed Ali; the new Oceansize single starts to play. But wait, what's this? The track isn't new, in fact it's four years old, and quite possibly the weakest track they have put down on record.
As I prepare for a backlash from die-hard fans let me state the reasoning for this: Oceansize are renowned for their wall-of-sound approach, which they pull off better than anyone not called Kevin Shields. _'Heaven Alive' however sounds remarkably bare, the guitars pushed to the back, hiding behind electronic samples and vocals too weak to hold their own in the foreground.
Perhaps inevitably, the song sounds incredibly dated, plodding along like a nu-metal era track given a go-over by fellow Mancs Amplifier. Choirboy vocals fade in and out for no apparent reason, not adding to the song in the way that they do to the likes of Hell Is For Heroes' 'Kamichi'. Many will draw comparisons to Tool especially with Mike Vennart's vocals, but 'Heaven Alive' lacks the ingenuity or hooks of Maynard James Keenan's gang of satanists.
It's a shame when a band with the potential of Oceansize release a track like this. Hopefully it is just meant to bring in a bigger fanbase and does not highlight the standard of their forthcoming album Everyone Into Position. The track, however, is still poor and although due to the track's gestation period it's unfair to say that this is the sound of a band running out of ideas, it's still a band choosing the wrong ones - which overall is a much bigger disappointment.
4Jordan Dowling's Score