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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez

Eclectic Prog

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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Sworn Virgins album cover
3.65 | 12 ratings | 1 reviews | 25% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2016

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Pineapple Face (2:26)
2. Not Even Toad Loves You (4:34)
3. To Kill a Chi Chi (3:22)
4. Trick Harpoon Stare of Baby (3:51)
5. High Water Hell (4:17)
6. Saturine (2:07)
7. Crow's Feet (4:34)
8. Heart Mistakes (2:25)
9. Logged into Bliss (3:28)
10. Fortuna (1:29)
11. Twice a Plague (3:23)

Total Time 35:56

Line-up / Musicians

- Omar Rodríguez-López / instruments

Releases information

June 25, 2016
Format: CD, Digital

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OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ Sworn Virgins ratings distribution

(12 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(25%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(8%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (17%)
Poor. Only for completionists (17%)

OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ Sworn Virgins reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Kempokid
4 stars My second dive into the wide, sprawling world of Omar Rodriguez Lopez's solo career took me to this album here, since after hearing about the absurd amount of albums he released in 2016, I became extremely curious about the quality of these albums. My immediate thoughts upon listening through this was just how amazingly groovy and off kilter a lot of this is, especially in terms of the heavily distorted vocals. There is a distinct Latin flavour to each of the songs here, along with a distinct alternative rock style across many of the tracks, leading to an album that;s both more accessible than some others, while still clearly being an extremely strange, experimental and at times, difficult album.

The album starts off wonderfully with an amazing 2 part song highly reminiscient of Discipline era King Crimson, particularly Elephant Talk, both with their extremely strange vocal rhythms and styles, while an electronic heavy beat is blaring behind it. I really love the vocals here, with the extreme distortion working perfectly with the energy put into each note, being passionately yelled. The transition between the 2 songs is also great, bringing in a more frenetic drum beat along with great melodic elements, complete with a downright infectious hook. After this powerful opener, To Kill A Chi Chi is relatively standard in the whole scheme of things, being a fairly standard alt rock song in terms of melody and the production on the guitar. That said, this is an absolute highlight of the album with the slightly off, unsettling way that everything is sung to be downright chilling, and the chorus to be utter perfection when combined with the melancholy of everything else. The album does have some issues though, with the tracks that get more off the beaten path and into strange, experimental territory often losing their way, since the sound and tone created is already extremely peculiar, meaning that it actually lends itself better to that simpler structure in many part, so it doesn't just feel like noise. This is the problem I have with a couple of tracks, but mainly Trick Harpoon Stare of Baby.

I really appreciate the turn that the album takes from High Water Hell, with a very sleazy feel to it working perfectly with the slight drawling of the vocals, with the lyrics of the chorus further accentuating this. The rhythmic depth and power on the album is no more clear than on the next 3 tracks, with Saturine being what feels like the musical equivalent of the uncanny valley, with everything sounding very slightly off, creating a deep feeling of unease that I am hard pressed to find another piece of music that provides it. The next 2 tracks sound like a slower, more psychedelic take on something from Bedlam in Goliath, which I personally find to be an extremely positive thing given my love for that album. The album ends with a trio of calmer, more melodic songs, which I find works well considering the extremely interesting production makes them more unique than they otherwise would be, with Twice A Plague in particular being great.

Overall, I find this to be a really fun, interesting album, with some incredible grooves mixed in with catchy hooks and some amazingly executed musical concepts. I really love the scratchy, distorted vocals and the way the music has been composed in such a way to make them fit perfectly. I'd definitely take this any day of the week over The Mars Volta's last 2 albums, as while it may sometimes falter slightly, it's overall a unique listening experience that I recommend strongly to those who enjoy Omar's work in general

Best songs: Pineapple Face, To Kill A Chi Chi, Saturine, Heart Mistakes

Weakest songs: Trick Harpoon Stare of Baby

Verdict: A fun, bizarre album that while not really accessible to a general audience, is highly recommended for anyone who enjoys Omar's work, being wonderfully psychedelic and weird while still being compositionally great.

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