The Omega Experiment's self-titled debut has been out for a little over a year now, but the April 9 re-release on Listenable Records is exactly what this record deserves; a chance to be heard by a massive audience, because this instant classic doesn't deserve anything less.
Right from the burst of optimistic energy "Gift" starts off with until the gorgeously driving ending to "Paramount," The Omega Experiment fails to disappoint even in the slightest. The most impressive thing about this album above the playing and overall catchiness of it is that it's insanely complex, but never sounds like it is. Just for argument's sake, let's take the introductory vocal harmonies of the second track "Stimulus." Can't stop singing it, right? Well it's in 5/4, and you wouldn't have even thought twice about that passage. The fact that the band can take these complicated and oddly-timed pieces and fit them together into something coherently pleasing to the ear is a true mark of a few great musicians.
Then there's the flow of the album itself, which plays through more like one full song rather than a bunch of songs that flow nicely, or even a collection of songs. The album tells the story of addiction and recovery; the beauty of a life that's been lived, lost, and regained through willpower. Uplifting story for uplifting music, right? In a sense, but it's never cheesy or cloying. Same thing with the sections that are meant to tell the darker side of the story; sure, they're dark and you know what's going on, but the music isn't beating you over the damn head with it to make sure you got the point just in case you're an idiot. The album has faith that its listeners are competent enough to pick up on the story and moods.
The word "moods" gets thrown around a lot in this review, but I swear it's less of a buzz-word and more of an actuality when it comes to this record. Just for comparison, take "Furor" and "Terminus." "Furor" goes from a jog to full-on spiriting insanity and never lets up the Devn Townsend-flavored heavy one bit, while "Terminus" takes an incredibly spacey, moving, melodic approach to a long-form song that chronicles the recovering of an addict, and closes out beautifully with just vocalist Dan Wieten singing over an acoustic guitar. Despite all the shifts in sound that occur throughout the album, there's never a moment where the music isn't still identifiably The Omega Experiment.
Try as you might, there are zero bad thing to say about this record; it's a modern masterpiece of progressive metal music. Everything about it is simply great, from the musicianship to the writing, from the vocals to the overall concept behind it. To give this album anything less than a perfect score would be unfair to the band and its fans.