Artist: OmniTitle: BallyhoooRating: 2 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Starrene Rhett

It’s safe to say that most artists live in their own world. In some cases, so much so, that the rest of us get lost in the midst of their expression ? take Omni for example. With his third LP, Ballyhoo (Ariel Records), it’s kind of hard to place where he was going or what he was trying to say. An underground favorite hailing from Cali, Omni hit but missed this time around.

Opening with “Back at It,” featuring Myka 9, it’s obvious that Omni was musically influenced by early 90’s, left coast Hip-Hop (Souls of Mischief, The Dogg Pound, etc.). With a gritty, sinister sound, the song has a gangsta swagger. “Never tell a copper where I got my bud from/never turn my back on where I got my love from,” is the hook in the catchy song, where it’s hard not to nod your head and feel like a G along with Omni. Another standout track is “Feel How I Feel.” Also maintaining the gangsta swagga provided by track one, and with Fatlip on the hook, it’s a walk in Omni’s shoes (as an MC) without being extra cliché and remaining lyrically on point.

By the time you reach “MadMan” (song #10), a dope song with the dramatic affect of a horror movie, the meandering quality of the album loses you with some of the stuff in between. If you’re not in shock, wondering what “Coca Cola,” possibly the worst song on the album, was all about, you may be wondering why “Turntable Destroyer” a song that had a great deal of potential, was only about 46 seconds.

Lyrically, Omni has skills, however, the randomness and mediocrity of Ballyhoo definitely don’t make it one to remember.