The retro brightly colored album cover of Omni’s latest release is an entirely accurate preface to what the listeners are about to encounter in Multi-Task. Even the name itself couldn’t be more fitting for the 11 track full length album.This 2017 release encompasses a freshly chaotic compilation of driving bass riffs and jerky guitar parts, all entangled into 11 tracks of -- not so ironically -- precisely multitasking music. The variance in tracks is sporadic and diverse enough to maintain the listener's attention, yet captures a consistently thematic sound to allow an appealing flow through the album. As a listener one can definitely sense the influence of artists such as Parquet Courts, Television, and Devo; yet, the album is obviously genuine in their originality and a sincere reflection of the dizzying multitasking that many of us are faced with in everyday life.
If the album art and title didn’t tip you off for what Omni was about to unload for their listeners, the first song is a perfect first glimpse into the album’s entirety. “Southbound Station” is chimey and driving, just enough so to capture the listener’s attention. The repetitive and chaotic intro riff is consistent for the majority of the song until all of the bass and high pitched guitar parts all come together for an ending section of powerful strumming and solid conclusion to the intro. For the last few seconds, you are brought back around to the beginning of the song with a jerky yet concluding finish, a reminder of Omni’s sporadic intentions.
“Equestrian” is easily the most catchy and easy listening track on the album. One thing that Omni has surely perfected through this album is their ability to navigate through transitional riffs and intertwine layers on layers of melodies that wind in and out of each other; this is noticeably demonstrated in “Equestrian.” I would even say this is easily the most danceable track on the album. However, the most noticeable characteristic in this song is the sing along nature of the lyrics such as “you’d like to meet me in the lobby/ even though you know it’s no place to be.” or “would you like a mint on your pillow/ I can take it off your hands cause I got to go”.
“Choke” and “Tuxedo Blues” were both consistent with the chaotic nature of Multi-Task. “After Dinner” also remains true to the jerky guitar and chaos that is Omni’s intention, yet this song provides an insight into some of the more sedate and somber intentions of the album. However, this song still concludes with an intense drive of guitar parts layered over top of each other. While “After Dinner” provides the initial insight into the sedate nature of Omni, “First Degree” is a noticeable execution of these emotions. At this point, the listener has to imagine that the progression of the album is a reflection of the initial excitement which taking on multi-tasking may entail, and progressing in and out of becoming tired and burnt out by the chaos.
The most noticeable track in the conclusion is easily “Calling Direct”. It is uniquely stripped down and an almost neutral combination of both the chaos and sedation which Multi-Task may bring. “Is there another?” chimes repeatedly in Phillip Frobos’ reserved, slightly deep and soft voice of similar effect as Beach Fossils or Television.
There is no doubt that Omni remains true to their album title, cover, and overall nature all the way through to the last few songs. Multi-Task in total has produced several songs which are easily attractive to a variety of music tastes, making it an incredible first full length album.