Today I am stepping out of my video game reviewing comfort zone, and doing a music review!
This review is about the album The Ocean by Smalltape. Smalltape is a musical project started by Phillipp Nespital, who previously release an album “CIRCLES” back in 2011. In 2013 he recorded a song “One Life” with the German Film Orchestra Babelsberg. After that experience he started to work on some new ideas which eventually blossomed into a concept album called “The Ocean” released on May 5th, 2017.
Smalltape primarily remained a solo project, but due to the demand of playing live, Phillipp needed help with different instruments and a loop station. Smalltape grew from a duo (Alexandra Praet on bass and keyboard) to a trio (Raphael Meinhart on drums) to a quartet (guitar player Flavio De Giusti). The latest addition to the lineup was Otis Sandsjo with his saxophone playing skills.
“The Ocean” is a concept album dealing with self identity. “The Ocean” is a metaphor for the waves of self discovery that come and go throughout one’s lifetime while they discover whom they really are.
The really cool thing about this album is that all he songs are tied together, and something as simple as instrumentation can be considered a running thread through each song.
Each track has a completely different feel too it, while remaining connected to one another, which is an odd thing to say, but once you listen to the whole album, you’ll understand what I mean.
Instrumentation varies from track to track, for instance, Track 1 “When the Waves Divide” uses brooding strings while Track 5 reminds me almost of a Led Zeppelin song wich drums, electric guitar, and great vocals.
Lyrically the album is on point as well, some stand out lyrics are:
From The Shore:
“The sky still melts into the sea
The same way like it used to be
The wind was dancing with your hair
a breath of salt in the air”
From The Diver:
“I see the water rise, it comes and goes
it flows and turns from glass to arctic ice and then to snow”
From Picture of a Dawn:
“And in this town, the darkest cave
brought light onto what midnight gave
no hero left, no fool or brave
but glowing sky – we are safe today.”
Do yourself a favor, and purchase this album so that Smalltape can continue to make great music. The album can be purchased from their website at: http://smalltape.net/shop/ the album is also available for streaming on Spotify.