The Omega Experiment - Karma
Record Label: Independent
Release Date: January 31, 2011
The Omega Experiment is a two man progressive metal project consisting of Dan Wieten and Ryan Aldridge out of Muskegon, Michigan, founded in 2007 and transitioned from solo to duo in 2009. Their influences range everywhere from classic rock, to 80’s pop, to every sort of metal under the sun. And it shows. Their debut album, as of yet untitled, will be released sometime in late spring or early summer of this year. For now, we’ll just have to enjoy their sampler EP, Karma.
How is it?
Fun, fast, intense, and positively addicting. Just like a good adventure game. In fact, Karma would make an amazing soundtrack to a Sonic game. The Omega Experiment takes the blisteringly fast-paced technical shredding of your standard everyday djent/prog metal band and kicks it into overdrive, with even more adept use of electronic effects, ranging everywhere from sharp and ambient tones to frantic, adrenaline-pumping beats and ear candy synth lines. The EP’s power metal style vocals rise high and maintain a commanding stalwart on the listener's attention, occasionally changing it up with an interestingly bizarre spoken word portion. Catchy, entrancing choruses and drawn out, atmospheric belting infuse each track. Metal fans everywhere might complain about most of the growling being for effect purposes and the vocal modification of the singing. However, these changes are purely innovative, greatly enhancing the music's effect and only serving to set the band further ahead of the curve. Lyrically, the meaning of each song is pretty cryptic which leaves a lot of room for individual interpretation; never a bad thing.
Although it's mostly quite a young genre, djent is already becoming heavily hyped and heavily bandwagoned as a result, which has been clogging up the prog metal scene lately. I've seen djent bands form seemingly out of thin air, attempting to ride on the waves of their predecessors, with few making any sort of progression forward from the offerings of Periphery, Keith Merrow, Animals As Leaders, and the like. The Omega Experiment are the first progressive metal band I've found so far to truly run counter to the djent trend and offer something completely new. Karma has such a unique feel to it that I would recommend it even to people who don't typically enjoy heavy music. I absolutely cannot wait for their upcoming album, and Karma will probably be on repeat on my iTunes for a while until then.