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Transcendental to feature one track each

MONO The Ocean Transcendental EP art

If anyone was following us around the time The Ocean‘s last album Pelagial came out, you’ll know how over the top we went with coverage, dedicating a whole week to the band. Shit was nuts.

As such, you’ll understand that to hear news of a new release on the immediate horizon makes us quite happy – but to hear that said release will be a split EP with one of the finest and longest-running post-rock bands active today – Japanese quartet MONO – causes excitement on a transcendental level – which is exactly the idea we suspect, as Transcendental is the name of the EP. Neat!

The bands will present one track each. MONO’s will be called “Death In Reverse“, with main songwriter Takaakira Goto commenting:

“The theme of this track is life and death and regeneration. Even when our bodies decay and decompose, our souls will prevail unchanged. Our bodies will act as seeds for the next generation, while our souls will journey together into our new eternal life. This is the story we want to explore with our next album, a portrayal of our journey through life towards death; from living out our lives proud and high, to bodies immolating, infused with precious memories… and through the vast, noisy tunnel of space, we become pure souls – a single drop of water in the fountain of life.”

If you caught their recent-ish double album The Last Dawn/Rays of Darkness - or indeed, any of the previous six albums, three EPs, two split EPS, or the various remixes, live albums, DVDs or compilations, you’ll know that the four piece are absolute masters of their craft, eking visions of vast soundscapes from often minimalist compositions.

For their part, The Ocean’s track is titled “The Quiet Observer” and will clock in at a hefty thirteen minutes in length. Conceptual as ever, it’s inspired by Enter The Void, a movie which tells the story of a drug dealer getting shot in a Tokyo toilet while tripping on DMT, and entering the “intermediate state”, the moment ”immediately after a person’s death, when the intellect of the dead person must face its own illusions”, according to Bardo Thodol, the Tibetan Book Of The Dead. Heavy stuff.

Of course, this collaboration is no surprise really; The Last Dawn and Rays of Darkness were both released by The Ocean main man Robin Staps’ Pelagic Records, so the connection is there, but in spirit both bands are no strangers to grand compositions.

Transcendental will come out 23rd October via Pelagic, on 12″ vinyl, CD, and of course digitally.