The Smashing Pumpkins “Oceania” Album Review
FINALLY! THE SMASHING PUMPKINS HAVE RELEASED OCEANIA! I marked the day this album will be released on my calendar. The lead singer, Billy Corgan (who is also referred to as a rock version of Voldemort) announced that a new album is being worked on after many years of separation, where the band members focused on side projects and solo work. He never makes things easy on himself or his band members and he pushes boundaries of the genre, adding something new to the table.
Oceania is an album within an album. It continues after the previous record, Teargarden By Kaleidyscope, becoming a part of the 44-song project. Teargarden By Kaleidyscope is an album which is inspired by the Tarot, a pack of playing cards which is most recently used for fortune-telling and horoscopes. Oceania features 13 songs which are a lot less heavy than the previous albums according to guitarist Jeff Schroeder. He also commented about the album saying: “In this day and age, with what’s going on politically and socially, it just feels right to play something that’s a little more spacey and dreamy. We want music to move people on an emotional level.” Despite the fact that Corgan is DIY (Do It Yourself) kind of musician, he composed and wrote every song for the album. New comers Mike Byrne and Nicole Fiorentino acts as the drummer and the bassist of the band respectively, who contributed to the album as vocalists too.
The much-anticipated album was promised to have tunes similar to the previous records like Gish (1991), Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness (1995) and Siamese Dream (1993), bringing back the originality of the band’s success. Corgan had explained how this album was his best effort since Mellon Collie. He also explained that this album defines alienation – alienation in love and culture, which is true. For a person listening to The Smashing Pumpkins for the first time, they get really confused about the non-understandable lyrics and unrelated song names. There is meaningful poetry that takes true fans to understand the lyrics behind the songs they play.
The album is filled with rock and electronica sounds that take you back to the grunge-ish kind of music dating back to the early 90s. However, the album stands out by itself independently, despite being a part of an ongoing project. It is a mixture of mellow sounds and grunge kind of music, working well together. Corgan’s work on this album is believed to have fulfilled the promises made. The Smashing Pumpkins sound alive and energetic despite being on hiatus for many years. I can’t put the experience of listening to this album into words in this review. If you are a fan of this band, go ahead and give the album a try. If you are not a fan, still give the album and band a chance. Also, listen to their previous albums. That will be the best decision you’ll ever make.
I easily give this album a 4 out of 5. Songs on the album you MUST listen to: The Celestials, Pale Horse, Violet Rays and My Love is Winter.
03. The Celestials
04. Violet Rays
05. My Love Is Winter
06. One Diamond, One Heart
09. Pale Horse
10. The Chimera
I’ll make it easier for you guys! Below is My Love is Winter.