Omotai 

Peace Through Fear

If only Omotai governed the country, we'd actually get something done around here. The Houston metal band shreds with the efficiency of a jungle machete, plus the precision of a Shaolin master. They kick out power chords like it's just a matter of breathing. And when all three of the members yell together in their echoey, Viking sort of way, I'm compelled to take their word as fact. This band is really about getting down to business.

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The Peace Through Fear EP is a glorious, driving concoction of brief hurricanes. If you like Neurosis or Mastodon, you'll like this newish band's way of thinking. The angular chords and spastic drums occasionally feel too repetitive from song to song, though if you're in the mood for head-banging it's the perfect prescription. "What the Misanthrope Said" sounds exactly like what a misanthrope would say if she was saying it not with words but with a battering ram. In fact, the next time someone asks me a stupid question or makes some inane comment about the Constitution, I'll just put on the song "Rotting Hill" and let Omotai speak for me. They know how to say it best.

Dead, The Men, The Underground Railroad to Candyland, and Omotai all play the Badlander/Palace complex for Total Fest Friday, August 19, with several other bands at 9 PM. $20. Three-day festival passes are $50/$45 advance. Go to totalfest.org for details.

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