Strewn from a myriad of collectives, Seattle’s Oceanwires pulls talent from the likes of Head Like a Kite and Gibraltar for a resurrection — or at least a broader light shown — of alternative rock that lingers from the early 2000s. The debut single and visual companion, “Beware the Heartless” brings Dave Einmo (Head Like a Kite), Aaron Starkey (Gibraltar), Jeff Baars (Mike Johnson, Long Dark Moon), and Samantha Wilder on bass (Princess), to a slew of oddities wrapped in progressive, alternative licks. What started three years ago between Einmo and Starkey has turned into an anti-collaborative project and into its own sound. Taken from the band’s debut album, THERE NEVER WAS A WAS, set to be released February 15, 2019, our first glimpse of Oceanwires may very well foreshadow a push from the sounds of the aggressive 90s grunge, that have been prominent as of late, to a renewed cycle of alternative rock.
Matt Wesson’s direction is lighthearted and aims towards more of an introduction of the band than anything else. Isolated panels emerge on screen with each hesitant guitar crunch, in the midst of what seems to be stalking by a suspicious, stuffed giraffe. As comical as this sounds, the video’s portrayal lines up with the band’s lack of trust embedded in the lyrics (“Beware the truth if it looks for you”) and is a rather interesting string of events.
Slightly hidden, each member is summoned throughout the lovely scenery of Washington with consistent eyes lurking, presumably reflecting outsiders questioning why these four created another project. Einmo (from what I can see) fittingly surfaces from the ocean with trophy on hand, briefly displaying the words “Kite Fly, 1st PL ’71” playfully mocking his own band, Head Like A Kite.
As the lost are found, each member finds their way “home,” sporting their worn chucks to the final destination of “Beware the Heartless.” Recording the findings on tape, and at this point befriending the ominous giraffe, the final shots speak of a fresh start. Lingering with youthful melodic screeches, power chords and a very prominent bass, the track’s livelihood is a youthful rush, simmering with second chapters and unrested angst.
“THERE NEVER WAS A WAS” is produced and recorded by Steve Fisk (Car Seat Headrest, Nirvana, Naked Giants, The Wedding Present) and Matt Bayles (Minus the Bear, Mastodon) and set to be released February 15, 2019.
Cover photo: Niffer Calderwood