Ocean Grove began to experiment with darker and dirtier styles on their 2015 EP Black Label, but the Aussie mob have raced 10 steps ahead with their full-length debut. Refusing to churn out mere metalcore-by-numbers, the self-proclaimed misfits have tossed out the rulebook and inadvertently coined their own genre in exploring what frontman Luke Holmes calls “our fascination with a warped perception of reality”. As soon as brooding opener What I Love About A Natural Woman lurches from the speakers, slowly, menacingly and crackling with distorted fuzz, it’s obvious that the ‘odd world music’ moniker is no misnomer.
From the belligerent, punk-inspired stomp of Beers and Korn-esque downtuned bass-driven Intimate Alien to bleakly hypnotic closer Hitachi, The Rhapsody Tapes cuts a path between heady melodies, infectious grooves and ambient soundscapes. Drum’n’bassdrenched
From Dalight sounds like it belongs on the soundtrack to an Irvine Welsh movie, while Stratosphere Love owes more to Deftones than it does traditional hardcore. All surprises aside, this is OG at their sublimely chaotic best.