Ocean Heights is a rising talent originally rooted in Philadelphia. His sound can be placed into the bedroom pop sphere but the reach it carries quickly transcends the limited nature of “bedroom” music. With rich melodies and lush production layers, the talented Ocean Heights draws from groovy tones of R&B that create swinging and gorgeous tracks. Drawing from diverse sounds ranging from 80’s Brit rock to modern electronic, this young star provides a refreshing mix with each release. Recent praise for the Philly-native is well-deserved as lead singer Justin Wilkerson has been chipping away at the music game since 2016.
This past week Ocean Heights’ track, “Prob” caught my attention and put me onto the next bright light in this bedroom pop space. The record features a subdued and groovy instrumental that is centered on jazzy guitar chords and wide drums. The bassline rides through the mix, seemingly exploding with each hit, sure to induce a rhythmic head nod. Vocally, Wilkerson hits sweet and vastly impressive falsetto moments that bless the mix with a richness that is difficult to maintain in the head voice. All in all, this track is best described as funky; the drums have that special kind of bounce that will bring you to a happy sway.
Lyrically and thematically, “Prob” dives into the age-old territory of attempting to speak on the problems inherent in growing up. Throughout the record, we explore this dynamic relationship with change, how it connects us to others, propels us to say the wrong thing, and makes expression vastly difficult. However, these problems and the pitfalls of aging are cleansed by the ever-so-sweet falsetto in the chorus. As Ocean Heights writes, “Hard to say I love you; words can’t say. If they could, I’d probably be stuck here all day.” At this moment we see this conflict of emotion and reality, the everlasting issue of emotional conflict the record attempts to communicate.
From the production to the vocals to the writing, “Prob” is a promising release for Ocean Heights. The link to this new record should be attached below and make sure to take note of the gorgeous colors on the visualizer! If the sounds and richness of Ocean Heights’ releases continue to follow this trajectory, expect more great things in the near future!