Omni at The High Water Mark – Tickets – The High Water Mark – Portland, OR – October 27th, 2017

Omni at The High Water Mark

Mississippi Studios Presents the stunning, angular post-punk sensations from Atlanta with new LP

Omni at The High Water Mark

Turtlenecked

Fri, October 27, 2017

Doors: 8:30 pm / Show: 9:30 pm

$12 ADV / $12 DOS

This event is 21 and over

Standing

Omni
Omni
Framed from within the relentless heatwave of Atlanta, Georgia, Omni cuts through the oppressive humidity of the gilded southern capital with a cool and breezy combo of lo-fi nonchalance. In paying homage to post-punk forebears like Pylon, Wire and Devo, Omni exploits a succinct and focused sound in their 2016 debut. Strung taut with wiry guitar and incisive rhythms, their approach is not without plenty of sneaky, danceable melodies to round off the hard angles. Indeed, 'Deluxe' represents a mission statement to cruise a steady though lavish wave of disenchantment like it was 1979.



'Multi-Task’ is an improvement to that surefire philosophy. Where guitarist Frankie Broyles once kept his noodling perfectly strict and razor-sharp, he now fans and stretches out, allowing his silvery tone to breathe in a way that summons the art and funk of Roxy Music, or occasionally even the cheekiness of Sparks. Vocalist and bassist Philip Frobos continues to ebb and flow with his crisp and oft-detouring beats. Philip's stony voice retains a detached stoicism with hints of spirit sneaking in here and there. On the road for a solid year and left to finish the record in between tours, Omni ratchets the fidelity higher as the punk gets more 'proto' and less ‘post'—all while the decade melts away - ex post facto, into the late 60s and early 70s. Welcome in the eccentricities, guys.



With 'Multi-task', Omni capitalizes on the indulgences of ‘Deluxe’ melodically, rythmically and in their aesthetic indifference. In doing so, they never sound ostentatious during any facet of their evolution. It’s with that expert handling of subtlety that the power trio—recently bolstered by the addition of ex-Warehouse drummer Doug Bleichner—has managed so much of its charm in its brief history. Luxuriate in two-minute track after three-minute track of covert hooks that lock into subconsciouses and keep the record spinning, front to back to front again.
Turtlenecked
Turtlenecked
With Vulture, Turtlenecked's Harrison Smith has created a beautiful art punk album that envelops listeners in a world of manic romanticism. The first track, “Boys Club,” the apogee of Vulture, begins with delicate harp and harmonizing, building to staccato yelps that are ultimately interceded by the strained, but still melodic screams of Smith, decreeing his effeminacy and disgust with other bands’ toxic masculinity. A pseudo-self awareness that, coming from a 20 year old, should be insufferable. But, regardless of if it’s Smith’s prolific nature, his undeniable musical ability or the standalone catchiness of the songs themselves, there’s something about Turtlenecked that makes any lyric or musical composition nearing self-indulgence or bourgeoisie instead steer into charming and charismatic territory.

Even the hardest elements of the album (histrionic vocals, harsh guitars, images of death and despondence, cacophonous drums) are cut with sweetness and pop melodies, giving the impression that Smith is using hysteria to feign a much deeper melancholy and a multi-faceted emotional competency he may not even be aware of owning. “I like music that’s accessible and fun….” Smith says, in the same breath condemning “happy albums.” This dichotomy is ever present on Vulture, both sonically and thematically. Smith moves from Big Black-esque severity, singing of wanting to “black out and sleep in my vomit” while using another song, one twee and simple, to wonder “am I the only one who wants a movie romance?” The movement between Smith’s perpetual disgust and tender optimism is seamless, as is the change in sound track by track. Smith’s influences are genre spanning, but the album sounds holistic and jointed—even on more experimental tracks like the 6 minute long dance song sung from the perspective of a serial killer.

As Smith grows, so does Turtlenecked. Despite being recorded entirely in Smith’s living room, Vulture sounds big, theatrical and developed. Keeping the post-punk sensibility and texture heard on past releases, Smith has removed any blemish from his sound without losing his edge or delight in the abject. On “Boys Club” Smith sings of his “delusions of grandeur,” but the only thing diluted about Vulture and Turtlenecked is that statement itself. The album is an ambitious, compassionate work of baroque and roll that further asserts Turtlenecked as an ever growing entity, one very much deserving of attention.