Indie + alternative music culture depends on dedicated artists who create diversity & drive innovation in all aspects of songwriting, production & performance. We constantly feature new & notable independent acts on the verge of success. Meet this week’s featured artist in an exclusive interview. Introducing You To Your Next Favorite Artist: The Only Ocean
Lompoc, California born four-piece, The Only Ocean, renders a fresh approach to Indie Rock, marrying a wide range of sub-genres from Psych-Pop and Post-Punk to Acid Rock. Comprised of childhood friends, Wesley Hill, Dustin Whalen, Shae Kakos, and Alex Burdess, The Only Ocean, has quickly become one of Southern California’s beloved.
We recently talked with lead vocalist/guitarist Wesley Hill to get the group’s take on alternative culture. Read on to find out more about your next favorite artist.
Comments From The Curating-Editor
The Only Ocean are a refreshing taste of indie rock emerging from Santa Barbara County. To put it simply, they provide the perfect soundtrack for hazy coastal skies, to warm you back up with their charming vocal & guitar-line weaving. Feel good bright rock can be found on their recently released EP TOO, with sounds somewhere in between an American Two Door Cinema Club and a harder Death Cab for Cutie. Their dynamic single So Shy So High carries stimulating riffs that veer on shoegaze, but retains a vulnerability that puts their music more adjacent to California pop rock. The track is perfectly layered with a subtle groove, aquatic guitar frills, and an infatuating lyrical rhythm that’ll just have you nodding yes in agreement. Definitely a song you’ll want to drive to, evocative of their EP visuals.
What are your top 3 favorite albums that inspired you to get into music?
Dookie by Green Day, The Blue Album by Weezer ,and Revolver by The Beatles
What are your fondest musical memories?
Watching my uncle’s band play at Farmers Markets as a kid. I remember them always playing Mustang Sally and thinking it was the coolest thing ever.
Lately what musical periods or styles do you find yourself most drawn to as a listener?
I’ve always been super into Spice Girls and how their songs sound but lately it’s been all I’ve been listening to. I’m just trying to spice up my life. Such a terrible joke.
What is your creative process like? How do you approach the writing process? Is there a particular message or theme central to your creative works?
It’s different every time. I don’t like to be superstitious so I let the songs happen anywhere. I’ve written songs in my bedroom, the bathroom, at friends’ houses, at the place we practice. Sometimes it just happens. And there’s really no particular message. Just because I wrote it doesn’t mean to get to tell you how to fell. I want the listener to take away whatever they want from our music.
We’re a firm believer that the cities that artists are based in helps craft their sound. How would you describe your city’s music scene? How has it inspired you into crafting your sound?
To me Lompoc has a pretty interesting music scene and I think being a part of it has really helped us as a band. It’s very close knit group of people and we’re always going to each other’s shows and always helping one anther out.
What is your dream collaboration and why?
Juana Monlina. I just love way she writes and records everything.
Which songs are you currently obsessed with? What new acts do you recommend to our listeners? What bands do you believe are your best kept secret in the indie community?
I’m currently obsessed with Perfect Day by Harry Nilsson. If you haven’t already heard it, then holy shit you’re in for a song. Mellowdrone and Big Black Delta for your next 2 questions. Both projects probably aren’t a secret but I love them. Mellowdrone was a huge influence on our first record. I saw Big Black Delta last year in November and it was fucking amazing. Jonathan Bates has been one of my favorite artists for the past 3-4 years.
What are you currently working on? Any new projects?
We’re working on our next EP.