Album: “The White Sea”
“The White Sea” is the third full-length of the Oslo-based hardcore act SHEVILS, The current album immediately follows their “Lost in Tartarus” LP released in 2013 which was, just like “The White Sea”, self-released on Vinyl. This brand new album consists of 10 rather short Hardcore tracks that, overall, leave much to be desired.
While SHEVILS’ sound is quite dynamic, and packed to brim with quite technical and well-crafted parts, listening to this album I couldn’t help but feel that the band was way too musically reasonable for their own good. The album suffers from an overall sluggish pace and rather thin string-work. Cranking up the overall pace of their songs would have helped bringing in a much needed sense of urgency that is unfortunately almost entirely absent on this record.
Sure, these songs are well-written and ´work´ as rocking tracks but sadly lack either the heaviness or the melody that make so many Hardcore-Punk albums awesome. At times I felt like I was listening to Stonegard or Dunderbeist, which is the polar opposite of what I’m looking for in any kind of Hardcore LP.
The one key thing “The White Sea” lacks, in my humble opinion, is pathos. I feel like the band played it too safe. There are some pretty clever musical ideas here and there (“Wordsmiths”, “Fireflies”) and the vocals are particularly apt, but those could have been expanded and made more effective by actually going all out, something that sadly only really happens on one song on the album, the emotionally and melodically powerful “When Will I See You Again?” which beautifully demonstrates how the whole album could have been, had the band aimed for something a bit less casual.
Text: Lyonel Perabo