Oooh baby, turn down the lights and turn up the bass. It’s about to get dangerously sexy all up in here with Minus The Bear’s latest album (and Dangerbird Records debut), the funktastic Omni.
Basically, this is the story of how Minus The Bear got their groove back after the lukewarm reaction to 2007’s Planet Of Ice, arguably their worst effort to date. And from the very first notes of opener, “My Time,” you immediately hear the difference. Featuring a synthesizer barrage of noise, “My Time” is taking you into the bedroom and dimming the lights. “Summer Angel” is a little bit gentler than the preceding track, bringing out more of Minus The Bear’s smooth rock sound. Guitarists Jake Snider and Dave Knudson emphasize the dark and furious nature of “Secret Country,” as their guitar work lends to the controlled chaos that is the bridge.
After getting your hormones pumping with the first four tracks, the band switches it down with the slow-burning “Excuses,” as Snider calmly states, “running out of excuses/when we know what the truth is/I’m into you/I’m into you/when you hear this song/you’ll say you knew all along/you’re into me too.” The track appears at just the right time on Omni, setting the tone for the middle (and best) portion of the album.
“The Thief” delivers the perfect balance between the rock and electronic aspects of Omni, while the one-two punch of “Into The Mirror” and “Animal Backwards” is pure auditory bliss. It’s heavy, technical, dancey, and psychedelic – basically everything Minus The Bear does exceptionally well. It proves that the quintet isn’t out of new tricks, as they are still striving to experiment and improve.
You can waste your time bitching and moaning about how Omni isn’t like Highly Refined Pirates or Menos El Oso. Or you can take the stick out of your ass and enjoy the ride. Appreciate the pristine production and bathe your ears in its crisp musicianship. Omni is accessible yet not watered down; complex and engaging all at once. Its catchy and progressive elements will surely dig its way into your cerebellum. Omni makes you want to take a stroll down Dayglow Vista Rd. and get your shine on.