/ Gentle Leader XIV
Sunday, Nov 05, 2017 9:00 PM CST
Empty Bottle, Chicago, IL
21 years and over
Framed from within the relentless heatwave of Atlanta, Georgia, OMNI cuts through the oppressive humidity of the gilded southern capital with a cool and breezy combo of lo-fi nonchalance. In paying homage to post-punk forebears like Pylon, Wire and Devo, OMNI exploits a succinct and focused sound in their 2016 debut. Strung taut with wiry guitar and incisive rhythms, their approach is not without plenty of sneaky, danceable melodies to round off the hard angles. Indeed, their inaugural 'Deluxe' represents a mission statement to cruise a steady though lavish wave of disenchantment like it was 1979. On the road for a solid year and left to finish the record in between tours, OMNI ratchets the fidelity higher as the punk gets more 'proto' and less ‘post'—all while the decade melts away - ex post facto, into the late 60s and early 70s. Welcome in the eccentricities, guys.
Chicago's GENTLE LEADER XIV conjures the unholy ghost of modern life while warming around the fire of a domesticated mythology. The trio pulls on synth heavy, chorus filled 80s heart strings without diving deep into nostalgia, evoking emotional memory over a gray template of realism. It’s pop without future, love without romance, survival with an undercurrent of persistent loss. New Wave, Post Punk, damaged vibes filtered through a pop machine that keeps turning out the hits. Why keep the radio on when the song is in your head?