Tension dominates the album Mighty Ocean and Nine Dark Theaters by Astronautalis. Part of this tension is musical. In a time when genre-blending is increasingly becoming the norm, this album still stands out thanks to its restless mix of styles including electronica, hip-hop, dreamy indie rock, and even country. Part of the tension is lyrical. On the first track, for instance, Astronautalis ponders the nearness of death, and on the second he sings about making out. Ultimately, this tension makes the album interesting and strangely comforting, despite the overall bleakness of Astronautalis’ subject matter. Mighty Ocean is the sound of a young man searching for a deeper meaning in the ordinary events of life, finding nothing, and creating art to fill the void. This album definitely won’t appeal to everyone, but adventurous listeners who give it a listen might find it worth adding to their music collections.
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