Possible Oceans, the new project from Los Angeles’ Trevor O’Neill and longtime collaborator Daniel Berkman (both of Deep Breaths), debuts with a reflective and pensive EP that displays the musicians’ legacy of invigorating and sympathetic indie-rock. The band blends post-punk with contemporary alternative-rock production, and a nightlife pop-rock energy distinct of the Los Angeles scene. Possible Oceans creates contemplative melodies that align with their more gloomy and sometimes mournful subject matter–taken from Trevor’s darkest moments in the past few years–but use brighter and winding arpeggiated guitar textures to convey that there’s light at the end of the tunnel. Charming and addicting vocal rhythmics, combined with effortless turn-of-phrase, will have you singing and feeling these songs soon enough.
Phase Change really signifies a new chapter, using experience as the driving tool to make more authentic and confident music that is engaging and thoughtful, open and honest, vulnerable yet wise. Reminiscent of Death Cab and influences Queens of the Stone Age and New Order, driving rhythms, pulsing synths, and interweaving guitar lines form the perfect landscape for Trevor’s stirring vocals and intimate lyrics.
“Deceiver” guides you through the stages of grief and coping, taking you for a ride, looking you in the eye. “Throw the Knife,” is a more standard indie-rock hit with tasty guitar riffs and catchy lyrics, you’ll be out of your mind not to love it. “What’s Coming to Me” has more guttural sound, leaving you disoriented with visceral textures, a fever dream “in which a person who threatened and tormented someone close to Trevor for years,” got what they deserved and sought their demise. The most brooding but prevailing “Skeleton Mind” ends the EP tackling the concept of depression and incorporating swelling and emotive orchestral strings to symbolize hope needed to face it head on.
Phase Change takes you through the storm, showing you that it takes patience and determination to survive the difficult times, but over its four-song arc, it also leads you into the dawning of better days and a sea of possibilities.