Omotai
Gig Seeker Pro

Omotai

Houston, Texas, United States | SELF

Houston, Texas, United States | SELF
Band Rock Punk

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


"Rewind: Omotai, Big Fiction, Canyons, and Ghost Town Electric At Rudyards 01/07/2011"

A general rule of putting together a line-up is never put your strongest artist first. Friday night’s show at Rudyard’s had to toss that rule aside out of necessity. We’d come to see Omotai but as we arrived shortly after 10:30 PM we heard some gut-grinding metal emanating from the stairs to the second floor. I raced upstairs and asked soundman Joe Omelchuck who was playing.

“Omotai!” he shouted back.

“Omotai? What? They were supposed to play last!”

“The touring bands had some van trouble between Dallas and here. We’re not even sure they will make it tonight.”


Omotai's four-string powerhouse Melissa Lonchambon
Oh great! So I raced up to the front to get an earlier than expected dose of Omotai. For those of you unfamiliar with Omotai, let me just tell you that they are likely one of the best metal bands in Houston. Not that you would pick them out as particularly metal in their looks but there are enough forgettable leather-clad long-haired tattooed metal bands in the world to prove that there is more to metal than just a uniform. If you don’t have the bone crushing sound, the brutal riffs, and the athletic chops, no metal uniform alone will align the Norse gods in your struggle to kick your listener’s asses. Truly, Omotai has all three elements yet the Norse gods will not align with them for they fear them.

“Their Metal is too awesome and too righteous for even the Gods,” says Norse God Odin (no metal slouch himself) “Anthony Vallejo’s drumming is a murderous inhuman pounding that sends chills down all those in Asgard; Melissa Lonchambon’s bass tone is so heavy and powerful that even Thor’s hammer shatters in its presence; and Samuel Waters’ guitar licks are so imperious and crushing that even my own Aesir warriors are rendered frail and weak.”


Omotai's Anthony Vallejo and his inventive use of duct tape.
Murderous, inhuman, heavy, powerful, imperious, and crushing are all good words to describe Friday’s performance. Even with the early and unexpected start, they killed. Vallejo percussive blur of beats was only overshadowed by the hole in the crotch of his jeans that was patched with duct tape. Honestly, I didn’t even notice it until I heard one woman say, “I know why he’s got that duct taped ‘cause if not I’d be all over that!” Oh great! Thanks for pointing that out, now I can’t help but notice! Thankfully, the patch held and Anthony escaped being assaulted on stage by lusting females. Lonchambon meanwhile head-banged her way through the set with nimble fingers and heavy ass tone. Let’s get this straight; the heavy in metal comes from the low end – the bass. You walk into the arena with a low and dirty bass tone like Melissa’s and your band has won half the battle. Waters, meanwhile, churned and ground his way expertly and with ear-splitting volume on the six-string. One thing about metal is that I’ve run into a lot of bands where the songs can seem like a mash-up of unrelated riffs – not so with Omotai; Sam’s a good enough songwriter to take unexpected turns while keeping things cohesive and organic. It’s adroit without being showy and Omotai is a band that doesn’t need to show off. They let the music do the talking and for the crowd at Rudyard’s on Friday that was all that was needed. Well, that and a good set of earplugs
- Free Press Houston


"Omotai"

RIYL

Neurosis, Godflesh, early Mastodon

Influences/Sound
Metal, math, noise-rock

Sometimes seasoned musicians just know when they’ve found the right collaborative
combination. It’s not an easy feat, but bands like Omotai don’t need to waste time
figuring out the pieces to the puzzle – they’ve already come complete. The Texas trio
formed in February 2010 in Houston; a city that is climbing the ranks in recognition as
far as music is concerned.

How the members of Omotai met isn’t particularly unique. Like many other bands in the
Houston area, Craigslist and the Hands Up Houston message board were involved in
the creating-a-band process. What does set these guys (and righteous woman) apart is
their instant connection – they just got it.

And if you’re wondering what it is, you need look no further than the music Sam,
Melissa and Anthony have created with other local bands over the years. Sam played
guitar in Kvalla, a metal band that took volume to a whole new level and most recently
played with another local metal band - Subjugator. Melissa has lent her bass-playing
prowess to a number of bands over the years, most recently with Houston favorite
Sharks & Sailors.

They took that combined experience and their shared interest in creating music that
resembled the melt-your-face-off variety and got right to work recording their first record,
a 5-song EP entitled Peace through Fear. The songs epitomize the texture and sound
of a well-done metal track. The execution is tight and the weight of each song is swift,
heavy and indestructible.

Omotai is not for the faint of heart. The ideal Omotai listener is one who longs for the
kind of music that inundates the senses to the point of excess, but is still left wanting
more. - YNH Media


"Omotai, Peace Through Fear"

Honestly, it’s apparent right from the first stagger-stomp second of opening track “What the Misanthrope Said” which way Omotai’s Peace Through Fear is going to go: heavy, thundering, hammer-like slabs of sound crushing you to the floor while the gods look on, laughing, from high, high above. And beyond that, the cover art and the band’s own freaking name step in and erase any lingering doubt — does it get more heavy-badass than a Japanese word that sounds like it could be Klingon and means “heavy,” “massive,” or “severe”? Is that even possible? (The answer’s “no,” by the way.)

Relative newcomers Omotai drink deeply at the well of Isis and Neurosis, pounding away at bass-heavy guitars while howling arcane, murky lyrics into the distant wind, although drummer Anthony Vallejo’s background playing hardcore serves the band well, allowing them to mix up the tempos somewhat — the band alternates between the instro-metal stomp and these crazily propulsive, skittering, hardcore-fast drum sections, and that alone keeps them well clear of any risk of getting boring. I’m really liking the way guitarist Sam Waters and bassist Melissa Lonchambon trade off on the vocals, too, with Lonchambon’s whispery, ethereal voice floating in and out while Waters howls and bellows from the bottom of the pit.

“Rotting Hill,” midway through the five-song EP, downshifts things a bit and gives it all an intriguing post-hardcore sheen that I’d swear sounds like it crept in out of the Dischord section of somebody’s record collection. It’s a nicely thoughtful track, seemingly throwing a nod to old-school horror flicks with the title and general aura of uncertain fear. There’s also a fair resemblance to Pelican going on throughout the whole of Peace Through Fear, although I feel a little odd making any comparisons to the more sky-aimed band, especially since I’m fairly certain Vallejo could grab all of the band members and handily pin them to the naked earth with his drumsticks.

The one resemblance I can’t get away from, though, is the resemblance Omotai bears to Lonchambon’s “other” band, the better-known Sharks and Sailors. Omotai are definitely much more on the metal side of things, to be sure, and I know the band’s got to hate the comparison, but their sound makes me think fondly back on the earlier days of S&S, back when they were heavier and less prog-dreampop-y. And trust me, I mean that with love — I do like Sharks and Sailors these days, but their occasional forays backwards into their head-crushing past make me strangely happy, as does hearing something that’s at least a cousin to that sound on Peace Through Fear.

This EP may be merely a taste of what the band’s got in store, but it’s an impressive one, like a door into some other world where massive giants stomp their way across the terrain and destroy everything in their path. And Sharks and Sailors can’t hold a candle to Omotai in terms of pure foreboding menace; in the space of five short songs, the latter are amazingly able to conjure up a shadowy, murky, somehow dark and threatening realm where the only thing you can really do is run away and hide from whatever the hell it is that’s hunting you out in the dark. - Space City Rock


"Omotai Kicks-off their first tour this Saturday"

A dark plume of dust and smoke rises over the horizon as a watchtower sounds a long dormant alarm. Massive gates of iron and wood quickly relent to the will of those who would seal them. Defenders race to the battlements - furiously arming themselves with a myriad of weapons long ago forged of fire and hate. Some forego their armor, favoring celerity over safety.

The panic felt in the hearts of those inside the walls of the city is not without cause for those riding in from the East are no ordinary band; they are the Omotai. Before them rides a foul ungodly stench of death and horror – one that savors the fear that thickens the evening air. The Omotai may be small in number but their might is one of legend. Their assault is wanton and unrelenting: a furious unstoppable beat of barbarity punctuated by cries from the depths of hell and blazing metallic strings of merciless rancor. Those who stand against the Omotai are not foolish enough to think they can withstand the assault - their cause is hopeless and their story will end here. Yet, theirs is not the only city that will fall this summer for, as the Omotai move across the land to the West Coast, the story will repeat itself – night after night, day after day.

Those of you reading, heed this as a warning for the first tour of the Omotai begins this Saturday. - 29-95


"All Ears: Omotai - Peace Through Fear"

Houston's no stranger to shred-heavy metal bands - we come across so many that sometimes it feels like a new one is spawned each week. Not all of them are impressive riff masters, though Golden Axe, Cavernous, Ghost Town Electric and Scale The Summit all fall into that category. Newcomers Omotai can now be added to that list, debuting their capable chops on their inaugural EP, Peace Through Fear.

The collection of five songs clocks in at a modest 12 minutes and 16 seconds, but be not mistaken - every moment of it is filled with thundering drums, ripping guitar work, and a low end that would make Geddy Lee need to change his underwear. The EP moves at tremendous pace, crushing song into song, and before the listener is ready, ends abruptly.

Omotai wastes little time on Peace Through Fear, which with each listen reminds us more and more of a condensed version of Mastodon. The vocals, when they are present, and the ever-present movement of the songs are to blame for this. If Atlanta's current reigning champions of metal were stuck in a compactor à la Star Wars, Omotai would emerge on the other end, ready to crush out track after track of bruisers.

Anthony Vallejo's drumming on this album puts some of the greats to shame - a fairly recent transplant to Houston, he's got to be one of the best in town behind a kit. Melissa Lonchambon, whom you may know from Sharks & Sailors, is arguably among the top bassists, and Samuel Waters is certainly no slouch on the guitar, either [although it gets a bit more difficult to pick given all the stunners we've got here in Houston]. The sad fact, however, is that none of these deserving bandmates are nominated for best of their respective instruments in this year's Houston Press Music Awards.

If we've a complaint about this release, it's the length - after listening to it dozens of times, we're still suprised when it stops. Hopefully this is merely the beginning chapter in a long history of releases for the fledgling three piece. - Houstonist


Discography

Peace Through Fear EP-Released 7/13/10

Photos

Bio

We became a full band in February of 2010 and recorded our EP in the same month. Since then we played shows around Houston with both local and national acts getting our feet wet and preparing us for the 2 1/2 week west coast tour that we would embark upon in July. Summer Tour 2010 kicked off from Houston, Texas and ended 13 shows later in Norman, Oklahoma meeting new friends and reuniting with old ones along the way was an amazing experience that has left us wanting more.

Now back from tour and writing new material,we're gigging around Houston again and coming to turn innies into outies all around Texas and whatever other states we rip through on our next upcoming tour.