"Domain" The 2nd release from this Los Angeles based trio features Scott Mosher on most instruments, Scott Oliva handling vocal duties and Alan Smithee taking care of the drums. All mixed & mastered by the reknowned Joey Vera. Oceans of Night describe their sound as"Ambient Progressive Metal". And after a few listens I'll have to say that is as good as any description, but I hear many elements being incorperated.
The title cu t"Domain"a dark opera of sorts,is divided into seven acts, which are interwoven throughout the song. Clocking out at 17:39 minutes, It's a long piece, evocative and emotional, Bleak lyrics leave me feeling despair, sadness,a sense of foreboding. Initially, I felt as if I was being sonically accelerated through a tunnel or catapulted through space and time. Getting more & more intense as we go. Great vocals,reminescent of some of the best 80's prog metal bands, driving rythm, amazing guitar work under which a swirling keyboard riff fades in and out, adding a surreal dimension.
At first listen "Don't Look to Me" had a strong AOR feel to it in the keyboards and guitars, Diving further into the words, I noted a tone of coldness, denial, broken alliances. The elements merge, sonically lending a cold metallic tone.
Beginning and ending with a beating heart, The instrumental "Dreams In Artificial Sunlight"seems to serve as a thread tying the first pieces of the album to what is yet to come.
"Divisions Of Time" continues the theme and sound, As the lyrics say, "We can't define the beginning or the end". That being said, this song fits right in the middle ,the driving rythm propelling it through to the other side.
The waves lapping on the shore, leading to a crunching guitar riff, the plaintive keyboard providing a sense of unity.The impassioned vocals singing of soul searching, searching through "Seven Days of Rain" crossing over to self discovery.
I really like the vocal performance Mr.Oliva gives on "So Near Yet So Far" A familiar style, one that any aficionado of the genre would appreciate. The music complements the lyrics well. There seems to be a tone of hope,the gloom has lifted, the view is clear.
Fast becoming a favourite, "The View to You" charges out with an anthemic prog sound that gives a nod to the bests of the past,while remaining contempory enough to still be progressive. Lyricwise it appears to be a lament of love lost. Broken hearts ,faded memories.
A calming melody leads us into "The Future Remembered" More progressive and less metal than before, evocative...Take my hands he says, we'll fall into the river of time,taking our past lives forward into tomorrow.
And so the tales come to an end, your past will shape what happens from now on, you cant escape "The Ghosts of the Past" but there is a future, After all,it's your DOMAIN.
I hear so many influences here, it's hard to say who Oceans of Time sound like. Maybe if you took Queensryche, Gamma, Shy, Fates Warning, Alan Parsons, Kamelot, Stratovarius, Rush, Judas Priest, Starcastle, FM and shook them all together you might get an idea of what's in store..Not a dud to be found, each track stands on its own merits while bolstering the entire album,with excellent performances throughout and fantastic production, this will be one album that I'll be listening to often.You should too.
Reviewed by Chris Erbeck on June 10th, 2012