Review/Bison's "You Are Not The Ocean, You Are The Patient"

You Are Not The Ocean You Are The Patient is the fourth release from Vancouver Metal Veterans ‘Bison’. Stark and visceral, this record is a reminder of the nature of human existence. Here words aren’t minced. In this genre defying masterpiece, Bison’s deafening message is well and truly captured. 
The album opens with a flurry of intense and groovy rhythm. “Until The Earth is Empty” is a song that perhaps underscores the painful urgency with which mortality afflicts the human mind. The vocals are a blend of eery and agonizing. From then onwards, the album goes from strength to strength. It builds on the bands previous musical leanings as well as exploring new territory as it were. “Anti War” is back to basics song that rages with the spirit of internal struggle, truly befitting the great era of punk rock. This musical sampling goes even further in “Kenopsia” a fully instrumental track that is reminiscent of groups like Mastodon with its quaint and introspective chord progressions. The band also weaved in some Blues melodies in there, proving that the group’s determination to embrace different sounds goes further than a mere filibuster.
“I wanted to also steep myself in music that wasn’t necessarily heavy in the obvious sense, so I was listening to lots of blues while writing the album,” commented James Farwell.
Standing in stark opposition to Alcest’s more universal and hopeful stance with the song ‘Nous Sommes L’Emeraude’, where the soul is transcendent and ethereal, Bison’s You Are Not The Ocean You Are The Patient comes off as grim and as rough as the message which it portends, together with the struggle against that harsh reality. Here Thomas Hobbes pre-leviathian age of brutish horror and suffering takes the stage with modern theatricality. In this declarative opus, however, the sentiment isn’t solely bleak and introspective, but benign and conciliatory as well. Bison readies their audience with this soft landing in the final track ‘The Water Becomes Fire’, where we can settle in and be at peace amidst the struggle.
 
 

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