German prog metal sextet The Ocean have announced they will release their brand new studio album, Holocene, through Pelagic Records on May 19.
The news comes in the back of the band releasing a new single, Preboreal, last month. The single was released without any statement from the band but suggested that a new album announcement was on the way.
“Holocene is an appendix to the two Phanerozoic albums and Precambrian, or the final and concluding chapter, making it a quadrology if you want so," explains guitarist and main writer Robin Staps. “It’s tackling the Holocene epoch, which is the current and shortest chapter in earth’s history, but it is essentially an album about the angst, alienation, loss of reason and critical thinking, rise of conspiracy theories and deconstruction of values in the modern age.”
Holocene sees The Ocean add a closing chapter to their palaeontology-inspired album series, presenting a gear shift towards the electronic world while reaching new depths of heaviness at the same time.
“The writing process of every album we’ve ever made started with me coming up with a guitar riff, a drumbeat or a vocal idea. This album is different since every single song is based on a musical idea that was originally written by Peter (Voigtmann, synths). He came up with these amazing synth parts that were already sounding huge in pre-production, and he sent me some of those raw, unfinished ideas during mid lockdown 2020... and while it was all electronic, it had that definite Ocean vibe to it. It made me want to pick up my guitar instantly… and so I did, and it didn't take long until we had an inspiring creative exchange that was heading towards totally unforeseen but very exciting places.”
The album was recorded entirely by the band themselves at Voigtmann's studio Die Mühle in the rural North of Germany and at the band's own Oceanland 2.0 studio in Berlin and mixed by Swedish producer and long time ally Karl Daniel Lidén.
The Ocean are touring throughout Europe with Australian prog rockers Karnivool in January and February.
Pre-orders will start next month, when the band will release a new single from the album.