Omnia Opera - Red Shift. 1997 England

What separated Omnia Opera from the others of the scene (and it should be noted the band themselves state they weren't really part of the movement much at all) is they were one of the very few, if not the only one, to actually be heavier than the Ozrics. Omnia Opera were an aggressive bunch with thrashing guitars in the Hawkwind style, mixed with the ripping solos that Ed Wynne and crew are also noted for. While their debut received positive reviews, Red Shift was generally panned. In retrospect, their sophomore followup is no less worthy of recognition. Where some of the dissatisfaction came from, I’m sure, is the inclusion of techno elements, which many felt was the direction that killed the festival movement itself. Delerium Records seemed to almost insist every band on their roster at least incorporate some bits of electronica into their albums (Note: Omnia Opera has exonerated the label, stating they had nothing to do with Omnia Opera’s choice of utilizing techno). Now I personally see the rejection of Red Shift as more of an audience’s turning-the-back on the new electronica styles being force fed to them, verse an actual objective viewpoint of the album itself. I suggest everyone who has a fondness for this style to give it one more listen.

Personal collection
CD: 1997 Delerium

Last listen: 2010

1 comment:

  1. Our friend Spacefreak informed awhile back in a comment (and I'm re-pasting it here): ""Red Shift" indeed aged better. Upon release I shelved it upon first listen, however I am regularly spinning it the last two years.

    OMNIA OPERA were heavier because they were closer to the punk scene (and punks populated Stonehenge free festival during the mid 80ies) than the space hippie tribe. Their very first recorded contribution (a sped-up version of "Space Bastard") saw the light on an anarcho punk cassette compilation issued in benefit of the Derby Sabotage Hunters fund.

    I don't think that it was Goa psychedelic trance (subgenre of techno popular at the free festival gigs) that killed the free festival scene. Both EAT STATIC and ASTRALASIA had a wide acceptance among their parent bands audiences. In my opinion it was the Criminal Justice Bill that put an end to free festivals, gatherings and outdoor parties, that ended that particular British scene."

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