Omid Monolith

Omid (previously OMD) has produced tracks for some of the best underground cats on the West Coast, including members of Freestyle Fellowship, Of Mexican Descent, Shapeshifters, and Dilated Peoples. His Beneath the Surface contained the classic (and conceptual) epic posse cut "Farmer's Market of the Beast." Monolith, Omid's newest compilation album, could (and should) have been made into two tight EPs — one instrumental and one with vocals. Although none of the songs on this album are bad, the rigid pattern of instrumental track then vocal track and back again becomes monotonous and breaks up the flow of the two separate entities, especially since the length of the instrumentals prevent them from being simply interludes. The instrumentals are mostly smooth productions with enough movement to remain engaging throughout. The vocal tracks tend towards a harder sound unafraid to embrace rock guitars. Unfortunately, the back and forth from one to the other is jarring. The best appearance comes from Spoon (of Iodine) with "I'm Just a Bill." The beat moves quickly and Spoon's flow is nearly flawless. The other guests — Busdriver, Buck 65, Hymnal, Abstract Rude, 2Mex, Aceyalone, and PSC and Murs of Living Legends — also make quality contributions. It might have been a better project if it were released as a two-disc set of EPs, but with current CD burning technology it's a problem easily overcome. (Mush)