Ocean Carolina is a 5-piece band of talented musicians residing in Brooklyn New York. The band is comprised of Alex Cox (Bass), Tony Leone (Drums), Jon Graboff (Guitar), Dave Wanamaker (Guitar) and all round musical over-achiever Michael Simone (Vocals/Guitar/Keys). Front man Michael Simone comes from an EDM background but listening to the bands latest album Maudlin Days you’d never pick it. This as far from the dance scene as you can get, it’s an old school style of classic rock that leaves you feeling at home reminiscing of the rock legends from the 70s and 80s. The album is fittingly named, as it is essentially a record full of sentimental tales, sung with real emotion.
Maudlin Days is full of tunes that are lyrically focused; it shows just how much experience in the industry this band has. For musicians with this much song writing talent it creates a vision and what makes them so popular, they don’t need any fancy techniques they just bring passion and natural flair to the table. Songs such as the opener All I Can Do, Cry Baby Cry and closing song, Someday Soon are such raw tracks that aren’t often found in the commercial music scene today. The songs they create have content that is incredibly emotional, often describing pain and love.
If It Burns Bright, Something and, Little Things are the shining stars of this record, they’ve got more pop elements than the other tracks but they’re created with an old school edge in mind and that’s what instantly makes them stand out. These songs are the ones that hit you first and have you feeling later, it’s all about passion and electric guitar and bass riffs. Upping the tempo for this couple of tracks aids the rise and fall of Maudlin Days, mixing up the beat every few songs creates a nice listening hook that leaves you to appreciate the mid-tempo rock the rest of the album is. It’s not an album full of insane beats but it is perfect for a lazy listen, the combination of Simone’s rustic voice and smooth instrumentals is all you need for a summer afternoon.
Simone is such a genuine musician that will have you coming back for more, Maudlin Days may be labeled as a rock record but its also got strong country roots that proves that these two genres can be produced in harmony, leaving you with an album that bares its heart and soul. While its not an album that will leave you stamping your feet and screaming the lyrics in your car, it’s one that’s going to leave you calm and collected. On a first listen you might be left a bit bored, but give it a second go and you’ll come to appreciate the effortless rock atmosphere Ocean Carolina creates with this soulful, maudlin record.