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Interview von: arne mit Adam, am: 29.12.2013 ]

Nach „Depths“ (2009) und „Contagion“ (2011) erscheint mit „Incisions“ der dritte Longplayer von OCEANO. Stilistische Veränderungen waren angesichts des Zuspruchs, den das Quintett aus Chicago erfährt, nicht zu erwarten. Unter dem Deathcore-Banner fühlt sich die Gruppe nach wie vor hörbar wohl und entsprechend entwickelt sich der Zwölf-Tracker. Wer Platten von Whitechapel, The Acacia Strain, Despised Icon, War From A Harlots Mouth oder Job For A Cowboy im Schrank stehen hat, wird auch das Drittwerk der Amerikaner abfeiern.


Musicscan: Can you perhaps tell us something about the intention and the spirit of Oceano when the band came to be. Has that intention / the spirit changed until today? What kind of philosophy is the basis for what you are doing with your band right now?

Oceano: We've always been a band fueled off raw energy and aggression and since the begining i'd like to think we still generate that within ourselves and the crowd. Now with Incisions we are for the first time tackling a lot of personal topics and using it to influence our music as well, so I'd say we're now realing becoming a band that completely aims to tim into the raw emotions of each member and the listener.

Musicscan: What is it for you guys to be called a deathcore or meatlcore band - is it somehow annoying or fine with you? At least here in Europe you are often told to be such kind of a band in reviews...

Oceano: Its a double standard. No matter what we're called, we don't usually mind it because it doesn't change the fact we're going to do the music we want to do, even it means going out of the "Deathcore" box a bit like on Incisions. I do tend to think people spend a little too much time trying to be litteral and overly precise when tossing bands in categories sometimes, though. I usually just tell people we're a heavy Metal band with Death Metal Influences and from there its up to them to check it out and judge.

Musicscan: Being around as a band with an own identity and vision, does it bother you when you see or meet kids who ignore you or have a different understanding of what your music and your style means to you?

Oceano: It used to agrivate me on previous albums, only because lots of my lyrics we're taken WAY too litteral and some fans transformed them into their own preconcieved notion of what the band stood for spiritually and such. I never wrote one song in the first person from my own perspective. In the end I've always liked the idea of songs being left open for interpretation, so I guess with that comes good and bad ones, so I'll take it haha.

Musicscan: How do you feel about your place within the metal-hardcore scene as well as in between tradition and gaining new ground to bring forth what the metal heroes you grew up with did before Oceano were around?

Oceano: I'm very proud of the demeanor and vibe the band gives off as we continue on. Growing up we've been able to play with a ton of bands that influenced us, not just in the music we play, but soley as fans of heavy music. We still to this day always show respect and gratitude to the bands who take us out andor who have paved the way for the new generation of bands like us. I feel because of that we've also gained a lot of respect and often made friendships with some of the bands we looked up to as kids, and I think that is what helps keeps us going to this day. Its good to have a few "stamps of aproval" from the forefathers of the scene.

Musicscan: Looking on extreme music in general you can find lots of sub-scenes and styles, the underground is changing all the time. Are there bands you feel connected with that might have a similar agenda to what you have with Oceano? What are you heading for in general?

Oceano: We're not worried about sub-geres and classifications. We just essentially want to write and play heavy music the envokes emotion. We do this for anyone who is here for the right reasons. Its awesome that heavy music can continual evolve and spawn new bands and sounds but I personally feel like the over classification is also fueling a segregation and rift within the scene. Nowadays you see handfuls of bands getting scoffed at just because they're "Deathcore" or just because they're signed to a specific lable. I think if those kind of fans just sat down, opened their mind and listened to the music first, helped spread the word about these young bands before lumping bands in groups, our scene would really thrive. We're a new school type of band, with an old school approach.

Musicscan: What was the biggest and the most primary reason you got into heavy music? Has this reason changed over the years with experience? And how do you stay motivated with what you are doing?

Oceano: I can't speak for the other guys but for me, I've always been into aggressive forms of entertainment. On top of sports I got into heavy music because it served as a great outlet and the bands I was listening to that got me into the scene seemed to really capture my true spirit and energy. I'm still a big fan to this day and keep up with all the newer bands and stuff because it further inspires me, excpet now I'm onstage doing it as well in hopes Oceano can now be that inspiration to fuel the next generation of kids in the scene.

Musicscan: The style Oceano is playing finds separation through passion and honesty, something you are not hearing too often these days. It's well balanced, brutal and having a good dramaturgy to keep things interesting. What is your attitude towards metal in general and towards being Oceano in particular?

Oceano: I think you captured it quite well right there! Haha In any sense, I agree and would add that even within our first two albums which were more concept or theme based lyrically we have always had some sort of message and purpose. Early in it wasn't really made too appearant and because we deffinitely do want to play pissed off music for pissed off people, we have grown A LOT since we first started, and honestly our music is pissed, but there are other emotions we all feel, and aggression takes many forms. On our new album we truely discover and unravel these alternate senses and emotions and that really has become our new purpose; To be a Personal, honest and unrelenting force connecting with our fans on many different planes beyond. I want to dig deeper than the one directional approach from bands being "angery" and acting "Evil".

Musicscan: With the extreme sound and the extreme crossover style that you guys have does it give you a lot more freedom when you're going to record new material to go in a different direction and not be constrained?

Oceano: Honestly, I don't think it does. Because again, everyone has to classify and pin down bands into what they are. So when curveball is throw to change things up for the first time some fans are shocked because they invested so much time picking and prodding a band and stamping them as only only one specific style, that nowadays beings different is bad. Some people want to be able to tell bands what style of music they are, I think we're a good example of that. "Deathcore" upon birth through and through sure, but with Incisions we totally went a few places no one would have ever expected from us and STILL we mix in some of the stuff we've done since day one. So hopefully in the end that'll flip everyones mentality that bands shouldn't be tied down so much just because their genre and direction has been sealed by others than the band itself.

Musicscan: Incisions is a pretty aggressive and self confident record. It is intense and stands somehow outside competition due to the fact you are not following trends. What is your view on the album?

Oceano: Incisions is my favorite album of ours yet. It'd like to think the album suffers from Multiple Personality disorder but in a good way. What we did on Incisions is throw away the preasure of what fans want. We through away the idea of what We even thought the band should sound like after 2 albums and we just got together and wrote heavy music we liked. The only 2 thing we intentionally sought after was for this album to be very personally and emotionally fueled and to create songs where each one stood out from the rest. Like the album or not, I'm proud because I know we accomplished those goals.

Musicscan: A more general one: Do you think there are still genuinely new sounds to be discovered or can modern extreme music basically be said to be a recombination of already existing forms and elements?

Oceano: I think a lot of the new sound of today are essentially blends of different styles of music. That doesn't make it bad either, but at the moment I think heavy metal has reached a peak in the persuit of getting heavier. Still I could see there being more to be discovered, but now we're really going to have to dig deep to find what that is.

Musicscan: Where do you guys see the line drawn between progressing on what you do well, and completely offering a new direction or sound? Especially in the context of Oceano of course...

Oceano: Oceano has always been influence by numerous styles and many different artist. We personally don't see a line, because if there was a line to be drawn then we ultimately are limiting our creativity.

Musicscan: Do you think it is necessary to create a certain distance between you and the music in order to get a better understanding of its inherent quality ¬ how do you handle such questions?

Oceano: Yes. I think after you become a performer you still must be able to see everything through the eyes of a fan. Always remember you started on the floor or in the pit and are not above that. Once you lose touch with that, you've lost touch with your own fan base.

Musicscan: Is there something like a guiding line listeners have to know about to get a better understanding of what you are trying to tell them with Incisions?

Oceano: Yes, plain and simple, we're taking "Deathcore" and doing what we want with it. Haha

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