Monday 4 June 2012

Dystopia rising - No Omega

Chaos, Pestilence and Famine are easy subjects for metal bands to cover nowadays. The end of the world is a theme that's been covered in many different ways by extreme bands for years, whether it's via environmental or cosmic lineage of even the outright denouncement of human existence, but that fact that bands are able to keep reinvigorating the subject, is testament to metal's progression. Add to that the constant evolution of scenes and genres and you've got yourself something that is thought provoking and absorbing.

I've not done a feature for a while like this, so what better way to start off again than by focusing on a band who's stock is rising in the scene. A cult band who come from a country where metal bands are forever rising from the undergrowth, trying to elbow their way into people consciousness. I'm talking about Stockholm's newest sons of anarchy, No Omega.

They have been and are part of the DIY Stockholm hardcore scene, dealing in disparate, cathartic subject matter. They're influenced by the kind of post-hardcore sound that made bands like Cult of Luna the band they are today and the caustic hardcore of bands like Rise and Fall.

In 2010 the guys self-released a demo and then released their first 7" via Monument Records and World vs Cometh. Their new LP Metropolis is about to be released by a co-operative of different labels, including Thirty Days of Night Records, Get This Right Records and Monument Records.

I was luck enough to catch up with guitarist Oscar recently, who told me about No Omega's plans and also gave an exclusive insight into what Metropolis means to the band:-

1. So first of all, your new record Metropolis has been out for a little while now. How's the reception to it been?

From what we've heard from people, they seem to like it!

2. How does it feel to have it released on vinyl as well?

Feels great! Although I don't have a vinyl player myself, I love the feeling of holding a 12" vinyl in my hands... it feels so authentic/solid in someway, more special then a CD. I love listening to vinyl over at friends' houses as well.

3. You're releasing your vinyl record through Thirty Days of Night Records in the UK. How did that come about?

Yeah we sent out a bunch of e-mail to labels last year. We were especially keen on trying to get the record out on a UK label like TDON, Holy Roar or Tangled Talk, since we worship most of the bands on all three labels. So when Jamie over at TDON answered saying he'd like to put the record out on TDON, we were really stoked, and so happy about it! We made jokes about being on the same label as Bring Me The Horizon (first EP) on tour in March, haha. Just a few more weeks until the vinyl comes out on TDON now!

4. How are things going for No Omega in general at the moment?

It's going pretty well, I'd say! We're still working really hard (DIY) with promoting the band and our music, as well as making tours and shows happen since we really love touring and want to do it as much as possible. So we've got the tour in July with GRIEVED, playing Fluff Fest in Czech Republic, which we're really excited about. And a ton of other great shows on that tour! We're also working on getting our asses over to the UK again in September for like a week of shows. Really crossing fingers for that to happen! Other than that, we've just started working on some new songs, which are turning out really cool. Keeping the "No Omega-sound" and the mix between hardcore, metal, sludge, slower/faster songs going. I think we're going to try and record some new tunes by the end of 2012.

5. With festival season approaching, which ones are you guys heading too?

We're playing some cool metal festival in Hungary on July 14th + Fluff Fest in Czech Republic on July 20th. That's it. But really big for us playing Fluff Fest. Really a dream come true and we're all so excited about playing there. Truly an amazing festival in general, and this year looks to be crazy with soooo many fucking awesome bands playing!

6. What influences No Omega, musically or otherwise?

Well musically these five bands are what influences us the most: Meleeh, Rise And Fall, Oceana, Dead Swans, Killing The Dream. But of course we listen to a lot of different music and a ton of other bands. Victor (drummer) mostly listens to metal, drum 'n' bass and dubstep. Andrez (singer) listens a lot to Pianos Become The Teeth at the moment, also Sigur Ros and Full Of Hell. Daniel (bass) listens to a lot of hardcore bands like Cruel Hand, Foundation, but also stuff like The Blood Brothers, The Locust etc. I (Oscar, guitar) am just listening to Deaf Heaven, Mew (Danish pop), Suis La Lune (my favourite band) and Dating (Swedish rock band) at the moment. So you can see there's a lot of different influences there...

Other than music a lot of things that are messed up with society or human civilisation in general influences us, since we are quite the political band, at least in the way that we want to convey a message which each text, each song. I just have a hard time writing lyrics that are completely meaningless or without a message, I'm thinking like "why not? Of course I want the lyrics that I am writing to have a message to the listener". The whole lyrical theme of "Metropolis" is very dystopic, and takes place in a nearby future where everything is basically going to hell (something I like to call "The No Omega dystopia"). The first few songs on the album are sort of trying to describe and establish some things that are fucked about the way we live our lives to day, the way society work and how civilisation is sort of fundamentally constructed. The middle songs are sort of describing events that are leading us to some sort of collapse: economical, societal, structural. And the last few songs are sort of dealing with this collapse and the "post-civilisation" world that this might lead to, after a war or collapse of some kind. The lyrics are very personal and they're written out of the perspective of one individual living through this dystopia. Dealing with his emotions foremost concerning the present world and the collapse, but also a little about love, friendship and struggles with depression and alienation. So there you go...

7. There's a lot of darker hardcore bands coming back to the fore now. Why do you think this is?

Yeah I don't really know actually... really cool music just i guess. For me it's more important that there's good musicianship behind the music and not just messages, but shitty music or just bad music with the excuse that "it's punk". This and melody is of course also really important...

8. Are you still in touch with your home Stockholm scene? What local bands would you recommend to us?

Yes of course! Both me (Oscar, guitar) and Daniel (bass) are in a booking group called Stockholm Straight Edge and we are organising shows all the time back home. Local bands like DISEMBARKED, THIS GIFT IS A CURSE, OUT OF HOPE, SUIS LA LUNE, SORE EYELIDS, GRIEVED.

I'm not going to talk about Metropolis too much, as I'll be reviewing it very shortly, but the entire LP is up for streaming below, via No Omega's Bandcamp page:-

You can pick up physical copies of Metropolis from the following labels:-

Thirty Days Of Night -
140 on Black vinyl.

Get This Right Records -
140 on Transparent Blue vinyl.

Monument Records -
CD Pressing.
140 on Grey Vinyl.

As well as this, make sure you visit No Omega on Facebook at

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