Review Summary: Great dark sci-fi metal
Let’s continue reviewing good stuff, for now. Omega Lithium showed so much potential on their first album. They crafted a unique sound, with gloomy synths and strings like a sort of creepy classical music, crunchy guitars, equally gloomy vocals and sci-fi stories.
On paper, that sounds insanely cheesy, but in practice, it’s anything but that. Omega Lithium have a very apocalyptic take on science fiction. The album is full of songs about alien invasions, societal collapse, murder, cults and conspiracies, and the music is dark enough to back it up. It’s not the most abrasive-sounding album you’ll ever hear, instead it’s more of a subtle horror that leaves a chill down your spine as you understand what’s going on.
The first track, "Infest", makes sure of that, with its catchy but sinister synths, distorted whispers, panicked singing, and lyrics about the narrator being hunted by monsters or mysterious evildoers. "My Haunted Self" is similar, being about the two narrators being hunted by someone from their past who wants revenge and haunts their dreams. However, the true terror begins with Andromeda, one of the heaviest tracks, about a science experiment who escaped her lab and wants revenge against not just her creators, but all of humanity. Mya Mortensen assures us that no one is safe from Andromeda, when she sings “We’re dying, we’re crying, just because she escaped”.
And that’s not the only threat to humanity. "Nebula" is a masterpiece of scary atmospheres, with one of the most sinister and yet catchy instrumentations, where the synths sound like evil violins, and Mya with her coldest, deepest and most threatening tone, singing about how aliens from Nebula invaded earth and wore humans down so much that they no longer see a point in rebelling. The title track has an equally sinister synth and offers a bleak view of humans, who are too controlled by their emotions and the mysterious beings that created them to truly achieve their dreams. But "Point Blank" assures us that this artificial society can only self-destroy, in the scariest and messiest way. There probably is some political commentary in there, but I’ll let someone more qualified than me discuss that.
If they were done by anybody else, the few songs on this album about love and sex would be its rare moments of levity. But not here. "Stigmata" has some catchy, almost new wave-y synths, but it’s basically about a woman who fantasizes about being murdered by her lover. “I am so cold but I feel alive” indeed. On the complete opposite end, "Angel’s Holocaust" is about a woman convincing her lover to commit, well, an angel’s holocaust, whatever that means. It could only mean something terrifying. And finally, another of the album’s best and most twisted track, "Snow Red", is about a boy murdering his incestuous mother. With its dark keyboards, heavy riffs, cold, deep vocals and sinister chorus about how “love is the strongest weapon, joined with the blade”, it’s the kind of song that leaves you with an uneasy feeling, in the best way possible.
Unfortunately, I don’t have much to say about the other songs, "Factor Misery", "Hollow March" and the bonus track. They retain the album’s dark themes but they also show how repetitive the album can get, having nearly the same instrumentations as the other songs. I guess this means that the album is good, but not nearly perfect.
Make no mistake, it’s still very good. Even if it can get formulaic at times, its formula is so good you don’t mind hearing more of it. It’s great at establishing a dark atmosphere, with its creepy guitars and synths, and Mya’s unique voice. She has that Siouxsie Sioux and Shirley Manson kind of deep, dark voice, and while she’s not on their level, she’s very good at expressing fear or a sort of cruel, sinister detachment. The perfect voice for that kind of music. So, yes, this album has a lot of good stuff. I highly recommend it if you want something dark and gripping. Maybe not every song is a must-hear, but you really need to hear things like Snow Red, Nebula and Andromeda. Now you know why I was so disappointed in Kinetic.