Ocean Roar - P.W. ELVERUM & SUN
FILTER Grade: 83%
By Jeffrey Brown on September 6, 2012
The second album released this year by Mount Eerie, Ocean Roar begins with the kind of expansive, aggressive guitar riffs only hinted at on Clear Moon (Phil Elverum’s first record of 2012). Rather than becoming just an exercise in exploring Elverum’s oft-referenced interest in black metal, Ocean Roar switches tones with the title track, and continues to do so for the remainder of the album. There are moments of quiet contrasted with loud ones (when Phil does loud, it’s loud), as well as surprises, such as ambient background noise or the sound of children playing... It reflects Elverum’s restlessness in developing his music even while he fits the new songs neatly within his greater body of work. It’s another album that can grow on listeners with repeated listens, but the song “I Walked Home Beholding” is immediately arresting, standing out beautifully amongst the rougher guitars that precede and follow it.