The Ocean Blue (2015 reissue)

The Ocean Blue

Shelflife/Korda, 2015

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler


It’s finally here! After years of languishing, the members of The Ocean Blue has managed to license their Sire Records recordings and give them a remastering job; they are also putting these tunes out on vinyl, some for the first time.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The Ocean Blue is one of those bands that have made some of the most remarkable, almost dream-like pop songs. A couple of those songs are present here on their 1989 self-titled debut. Blasting out of Hershey, Pennsylvania with keyboards, saxophone, and bowl haircuts, the band made a statement, declaring they were different from the Replacements or Camper Van Beethoven, bands that were ruling the alternative radio airwaves.

The remastered sound really brings the songs closer to the listener than they appeared all those years ago. Listen to pop classics like “Between Something And Nothing” and the epic “Drifting, Falling” and they just sound so full of life and energy. “Drifting, Falling” in particular, which features Steve Lau’s great sax playing and David Schelzel’s fantastic voice and songwriting, is such an amazingly timeless song. It’s one of those songs you fall in love with the very first time you hear it. It always reminds me of fall. I mean, just look at the video, shot in Hershey in the fall with the changing leaves – it’s just one of the best.

Unfortunately, those really are the best songs on this first record. The band is still stuck in a kinda New Wave-ish type sound and they’re more overtly pop than anything else. Basically at this point in their career, they hadn’t fully developed their own sound and identity.

For anyone looking for alternative with more of a pop kick and an ‘80s production, then this is definitely one album you need to check out.

Rating: B

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© 2015 Pete Crigler and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Shelflife/Korda, and is used for informational purposes only.