AN INTERVIEW WITH OMNI
Omni is an instant adrenaline rush. Slamming on your breaks before you can fly through the windshield, the Atlanta based band leave you suspended in anticipation as they speed through sharp turns and harsh angles. Tearing in with Deluxe and following it up with Multi-task a little less than a year later, Omni isn’t afraid of moving quickly. Jaunty and jarring, their songs are rarely over 3 minutes, rushing through all the encounters and introductions of life at breakneck speed. Doused in anxious exhilaration, there’s a constant momentum between Frankie Broyles’ jolting energy and Phillip Frobo's elastic bass lines that can only end in an an abrupt stop. Proving themselves to be seasoned multitaskers, I had the opportunity to talk to them before their show in Charlotte about isolation, technology, and hoping things don’t suck.
YOU GUYS ARE ORIGINALLY FROM ATLANTA! WHAT’S IT LIKE?
PHILLIP: There’s a great record label there right now that’s doing some cool stuff called Decay Records. There’s a really cool band called Karaoke that our drummer plays in, aside from that we’re just a little bit out of touch but I’m sure there’s a whole lot going on there.
YEAH YOU GUYS TRAVEL AROUND A LOT. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN RECENTLY?
FRANKIE: We’ve had a break recently since November. We’ve been mostly writing I guess recording, rehearsing so we’ve had some time in town but it’s been eaten up by all kinds of other stuff.
DID YOU GROW UP IN ATLANTA THOUGH? IS THAT WHERE YOU GOT YOUR START?
F: Yeah I grew up right outside of Atlanta in Sandy Springs, Phillip grew up in Gainesville, Georgia.
I KNOW YOU GUYS STARTED OUT IN DIFFERENT BANDS. HOW DID YOU COME TOGETHER?
F: We lived together when we were in different bands and we were having more fun writing together then with our bands so we just started doing that. Just for fun and then it turned into this after some time.
WERE THERE ELEMENTS YOU TOOK FROM YOUR PAST BANDS OR HAS OMNI BEEN SOMETHING ENTIRELY DIFFERENT?
F: I think there’s definitely elements of everything we’ve done in the past in this band but also trying to make it different as best we can.
P: Especially since this is us, we were there, and now we’re here now.
FIRST EVER OMNI SONG?
F: I guess the first one that was really kind of a part of this band was a song called “Eye’s On The Floor” on the first record. That was the catalyst for a lot of what happened afterwards. It’s probably our oldest song that we play.
P: When we wrote that one we could kind of tell that was a direction that we wanted to pursue, it kinda felt like we struck the right note there.
WAS THERE AN INITIAL DIRECTION?
P: No there was no direction. We have a lot of similar taste in a lot of the same things and I think that us playing music really came out of that, just like liking music.
FOR MULTI-TASK YOU DID SOME OF THE RECORDING IN ATLANTA AND SOME OF IT IN A CABIN AROUND VIENNA, GEORGIA. WHAT DID EACH OF THOSE PLACES BRING TO THE RECORD?
P: The farm as opposed to working in Atlanta it was just more streamline. The city is just impossible to not think about your life and responsibilities and then when we would exit and go to the farm it was nice because we could complete just focus on recording.
WAS THERE SOMETHING IN PARTICULAR THAT DREW YOU TO THAT PLACE?
F: Isolation. It’s in the middle of nowhere, there’s a lot of farmland, it’s an old cabin. There’s nobody around to be annoyed by. It really just kind of gives you the freedom to record quicker and louder.
YOU RELEASED DELUXE IN 2016 AND CAME BACK WITH MULTI-TASK A YEAR LATER. WHAT WAS THAT YEAR IN BETWEEN LIKE?
P: It’s been a crazy two years and it feels like it’s still continuing because we started writing Multi-Task before Deluxe came out but we also started touring in that time as well. So basically any moment in between tours we would have to be working on recording Multi-Task and it became like pretty stressful because we had breaks that were planned between tours but then another tour would pop up during that break. So it’d be like we’re going to be on tour for the rest of the year and at some point we’ll have an album.
WHAT WAS THE PLACE ON TOUR THAT MADE YOU REALLY THINK YOU MADE IT?
F: Last year we went to Europe with this band for the first time and that was really exciting, especially in London. The reception was really great I was really surprised - I was not expecting that.
HOW DO YOU THINK YOUR WRITING PROCESS CHANGED BETWEEN DELUXE AND MULTI-TASK?
P: I think very early on we came up with this writing process an we’ve just stuck to that since then. In the bending of the band it kind of happened that way, it started as a recording project more so then trying to create a band.
WAS THERE A SONG YOU WROTE FOR MULTI-TASK THAT YOU AUTOMATICALLY KNEW YOU WANTED TO PUT ON THE RECORD?
F: I think the last song was one of those for me. We wrote that song and we were like this song ‘this song is going to be the last song on our record.’
WHAT’S IT LIKE BEING AN ARTIST IN THE 21ST CENTURY?
P: I imagine we probably would’ve made a lot more money back then. But you know, it’s fun we get to do lots of cool things, do what we want to do.
FRANKIE, YOU DO THE MAJORITY OF THE BANDS ART, HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT THAT?
F: I’ll just have graphic ideas that’ll keep popping up in my head. With a lot of the songs I have an image of color schemes or some kind of designs and I build on that and it either goes somewhere or it doesn’t.
WHEN YOU’RE WRITING DO YOU THINK IN THOSE ABSTRACTS TOO?
F: It’s something that just happens. All of the graphics come after everything's recorded. Every time I start a new thing I’m like ‘I hope this doesn’t suck.’