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Check out excellent quality live footage of The Ocean playing the whole of Pelagial!

The Ocean - Pelagial

The Ocean came crashing down on us this year, with their exceptional new release, Pelagial (read our review for the instrumental version here, and version with vocals here), a particularly strong contender for album of the year. On top of that, they have earned a place on possibly the best touring package of the year in Summer Slaughter, which is currently making its way around the States boasting such luminaries as Dillinger Escape Plan, Periphery and Animals As Leaders.

The Ocean have already established a reputation for being a particularly hard-working band, so they have taken the opportunities presented by off-days from the tour to fit in some headline sets in smaller venues, which gives them the time and space to play Pelagial in its entirety as intended.

On Tuesday, August 6th the band rolled into Brooklyn, New York, to play the legendary St Vitus Bar, (under the name Pelagial) along with our friends in The Binary Code, and thankfully a fan was there with his camera equipment to capture it and share it with the world. What a nice man.

So here it is. The quality of the recording is remarkably crisp and clear, which is great. Unfortunately, the camera’s position over to the left of the stage means that Jona’s guitar is rendered virtually inaudible. But, considering the fact that the audio on most live recordings sounds like an elephant farting into a biscuit tin, this is a minor concern.

The camera’s placement does, however, command an excellent, unimpeded view of the stage. So it does give the viewer an excellent primer on what to expect at future shows.

Most importantly, the video really shows off the phenomenal talents of drummer Luc Hess. Luc is, I think, The Ocean’s secret weapon and one of the best drummers in metal right now, bar none. Doing twice as much as most drummers with a kit half the size, it is his contribution that, for me, pushes Robin Stap‘s great songs to become exceptional ones. His drumming is unconventional, but sympathetic and full of expression, and the view we get of him at work in this video means its one I will return to again and again.

The first 45 minutes or so of the set, as I say, is taken up by a complete rendition of Pelagial, and the band round off the set with half an hour of choice cuts from their back catalogue. The band take a leaf out of Dillinger’s playbook, and invite practically the entire crowd up on to the stage to join them for the final track, which they play around and on top of them.

The band are due back in the UK in a couple of months, and this video should just about keep us going until then.

What do you guys think? Were you at this “secret” show? Do you wish you were? Who would you bump off the Summer Slaughter bill to allow them to play the whole of Pelagial instead?

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