Rated O

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With Oneida’s ambitions running skyward in the digital age, for Rated O they took the risk of all risks and released a triple album. Self-indulgent as that may seem, recording in bulk works especially well for the rhythmic Brooklynites. Considering that they have often prided themselves on both being experimental and taking repetition to the limit, a long running time of 108 minutes only feels natural -- and with such a huge canvas to work with, they expand their palette accordingly, adding some new styles to the mix to maintain interest throughout. Disc one is a huge departure from their prior post-rock material, where they go the Fuck Buttons glitch route and use a wealth of electronics to create a long-running hypnotic groove. “Brownout in Lagos” starts the show as a fuzzed-out dub loop, complete with dancehall toasting by Dad-Ali Ziai. The motorik mayhem becomes more chaotic as the disc continues, eventually devolving into “The Human Factor,” a death-rattling scream coming out in the midst of sirens, a disjointed Gang of Four beat, and a meaty bass drone searching for the elusive brown note. It may be Oneida’s all-time most difficult piece, but luckily, all of the songs aren’t this relentlessly scary. Disc two ropes listeners back in with a more guitar-oriented, rock-based feel. The production is cavernous and haunting, and the riffs are beastly, making “Luxury Travel” sound something like a cross between Clinic and Isis. The dust clears for disc three, as the organ-guitar-drums trio explores its psychedelic side with three songs: “O,” a sitar trip-fest; “End of Time,” an organ drone and shaker; and the 20-plus-minute jam “Folk Wisdom.” Sure, it's exhausting, and there’s a fair share of filler, but that seems to be the point. As unruly as they are, all of Rated O's discs stand tall.

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
13:00 SpotifyAmazon
2 3:50 SpotifyAmazon
3 20:50 SpotifyAmazon
blue highlight denotes track pick