The Stills – Oceans will Rise
There’s a picture of a skull on the expensively assembled cover. The title sounds gloomy. Is this the Stills’ comment on the wave of death and destruction following the oceans’ eventual swallowing of Mother Earth? Probably. Possibly not. It’s hard to divine this from the LP. And to be honest, I didn’t pay enough attention to check. Lyrics are often difficult to nail when listening to LPs which (like this) are so devoted to a sound or creating a feeling.
This is the problem I have with Oceans will Rise. It’s okay as a listen, at times it’s a good LP (check the glorious glam descend on Being Here). But mostly it’s so smooth and musically ‘well meaning’ that I can’t find anything to latch onto emotionally or mentally. And the opening two tracks are a real switch off. They’re not growers, (I’ve listened to them more than enough times, I can assure you), no; they’re just bland.
It’s only when we get to track three; Snakecharming the Masses that a semblance of spark and drama lifts the music. Things are propelled with Being Here, which is the LP’s highlight, but things just get in 3rd gear and don’t move on. I honestly can’t find much to say about stuff like Dinosaurs (however nice the harmonies are) or I’m With You (a semblance of energy and thrashy riffs which reminded me of Big Country at times)…
A shame. Sorry.
Words: Richard Foster