Milemarker 

Ominosity

Milemarker has never churned out a consistently great album. Ominosity comes close, but moments of volatile, post-hardcore brilliance tussle with half-baked sentimental outpourings, as they did on preceding albums. Still, this fifth full-length emerges after three years in the void, with a competent and slightly darker hue, balancing atmospheric subtleties with mammoth crescendos and chest-pounding passion. "Killed On Public Transit" drives slices of sound from a day in the life on the inner-city train into a wall of swarming guitar resonance.

Each song congeals in a web of paranoid calamity. Stretched-out song structures and a broad tonal palette link the Jesus Lizard-esque "Pornographic Architecture" and the experimental country jitter of "Rambler." The angst and urban struggle in "Landlord" seems sincere, but the breaking point when vocalist Al Burian crows "mother fucker" sounds like it was cut and pasted from a Limp Bizkit album.

"Virtual Sex" further emphasizes Ominosity's lyrical shortcomings with a chorus that chants "let's come together." Conveniently these two numbers are back-to-back, so just two taps on the "skip" button leads to "Rivers of Blood," a crashing and hypnotic rocker that embraces tension, aggression, melancholy and strut in one winding, rhythmic entity. What a finale, right? Wrong. "Hydrochondriac's" cheap rumination on LSD tacked on to the end is an ill-conceived addition to a mostly unswerving album.

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