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SOUNDS LIKE: A hyperactive insurgence against the heavy music status quo.
FOR FANS OF: Hellions, the Ghost Inside, trying new things
WHY YOU SHOULD PAY ATTENTION: In the crowded and sometimes unimaginative world of heavy music, Melbourne's Ocean Grove are dead set on dancing to the beat of their own eccentricities. Out this month, the sextuplet's debut LP, The Rhapsody Tapes, is laden with themes inspired by the idea of hyperreality (thanks in part to TV shows such as Westworld and Stranger Things) and pulls no punches in its desire to be different. But it's not, explains frontman Luke Holmes, just about being weird for the sake of it.
"People ask us what the record sounds like or who we want to be... but we don't want to follow anyone's footsteps," says the 22-year-old. The group of friends – rounded out by guitarists Jimmy Hall and Matt Henley, bassist Dale Tanner and studio member Matthew Kopp – took to drummer and producer Sam Bassal's bedroom in Melton, Victoria, where the 19-year-old recorded, produced, mixed and mastered the record from start to finish ("He's a freak," laughs Holmes). The momentum from 2015's Black Label EP saw the group sign to UNFD for their full-length debut, and the band have just spent January supporting the Amity Affliction on an Australia-wide tour that saw them peddle their wares to 800-2000 people a night. And, yes, they're from Ocean Grove.
THEY SAY: "If there's any type of music where you should be able to do something different and not have people look at you in a strange way... shouldn't it be the one that's supposed to be for the outcasts?" riffs Holmes on the band's left-of-centre approach. "Either way, I'm not anxious about it – we've written music we really enjoy. I think this record coming out is going to give us a good kick up the arse. Now it's the exciting bit."
HEAR FOR YOURSELF: "Thunderdome", the third track off The Rhapsody Tapes, lights the fuse on a loop of atmospheric electronic drums and sees it explode into a riff-heavy hook that'll stay stuck in your head well into the latter half of 2017.