In 2014, Australian hardcore band The Amity Affliction
released their fourth full length album “Let the Ocean Take Me
”. One of the biggest bands from the land down under, they are known for their; distinctive vocals, song structure and overwhelming/empowering passages. For fans of their previous releases, you'll be glad to know that Let the Ocean Take Me
continues with their distinctive sound and they are just as empowering as ever before. Although the music contained in this album is not exactly ground-breaking, I think it’s great that the band have stuck to what they know and capitalized on what they do best.
The overall tone of the album is basically exactly the same as their previous albums (however, Severed Ties
was a little different). The Amity Affliction
come back in Let the Ocean Take Me
with their trademark vocals. The majority of the distorted vocals are high pitch rasps which sound extremely rough as usual. There is a real sense of rage and anger in the distorted vocals which definitely adds a sense of emotion to the album. The clean vocals, as usual, have a more of a happy chime to them. They’re high pitched, the pace at which the words are spoken is medium to slow (it doesn't sound like a rap like many other bands do) and also the vocalist draws out some of the words (I don’t actually know what it’s called when someone does this, but I'm sure there is a word for it). I don’t know if it’s just me, but there seems to be a lot more, let’s say, “post-production” in the clean vocals than there were in previous albums. They is not anywhere near as much as say, Design the Skyline (I sincerely apologize for making such a comparison) it could just be my ears playing up on me but it’s something that I've noted when listening to Let the Ocean Take Me
. Listening to the contrast of vocals is like listening to the vocals on any other Amity Affliction album, the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other.
The Amity Affliction
have tried to spice things up in Let the Ocean Take Me
by adding instruments which are not exactly in your “stock standard” hardcore/metalcore/post-hardcore band (guitar, drum, bass, and symbols). Quite often you might come across some; pianos playing in the background, and orchestra and even a choir. Although this by no means “new” to their music, I think the way that they’re implemented in Let the Ocean Take Me
adds quality to the album. Not too much, not too little, they’re timed right and are not too intense. I guess these other sounds that you hear throughout the album just adds that extra twist to the music which keeps you on your toes. One of the things they've added a lot of in Let the Ocean Take Me
is bass drops, I'm not sure if they’re analogue or digitally created but either way, they hit absolutely relentlessly. I remember listening to Pittsburgh in my car that has a decent sub-woofer and when the bass drop came, everything rattled, it was great.
In terms of the drum and guitar work in Let the Ocean Take Me
, Amity Affliction have always been very technical and well-rounded band. The music is very tight and doesn't feel like its lagging. There is a wide variety of tempos and rhythms throughout this album and I cannot think of a moment in Let the Ocean Take Me
where it sounds cluttered or out of sync. The fact that The Amity Affliction
can do this time and time again consistently throughout their album is a testament to how well their song writing capabilities are. The Amity Affliction
tend to have a thing in their songs where they go quiet for a second, to lead you into a false sense of security, then they absolutely slam you with noise. However the sense of security and the slam you get at the end of Pittsburgh I think will go down in history as one of my favourite moments in music. Like most of their songs throughout history the music on here is very dense, there is never a dull moment on any of the tracks on Let the Ocean Take Me
, they all come at you with ferocity and character which is very hard not to appreciate.
Overall, Let the Ocean Take Me
is a very well rounded album which take you on a tour of Amity’s trademarked range of mid paced passages, insanely quick tempos and snail paced sentiments. Yep, The Amity Affliction
are back just as strong as they ever were. On that note, how does it fair with their other albums? Well, it’s far better than Severed Ties
(obviously) but I do think that it also fairs better than Chasing Ghosts
in terms of memorable tracks. I mean, songs like Pittsburgh and Death’s Hand
they’re a very hard for any of the tracks on Chasing Ghosts
to beat (I’m not taking anything away from that album, it’s still very good). That
only leaves Youngbloods
, well, I think it’s very tough to compare albums of such high calibre with each other especially when it’s by the same artist. However, I do think that it came down to which one you must have in your arsenal of –core music, it’d say Youngbloods
has it purely because of the number of memorable tracks. Don’t get me wrong though, Let the Ocean Take Me
is still one of the better releases I've heard in 2014 and will surely create more excitement for the future of The Amity Affliction
. I give Let the Ocean Take Me