Some tunes on the next release, Cell Phone Bikini, will be familiar to rabid Omar fans as more of those “Mars Volta Demo” tracks rear their head. Those the lyrics and vocals for the album were arranged by Teri Gender Bender this time around, songs such as “Amarillo” will be unmistakable to anyone who spent some real time with those “demo” tracks. “Amarillo” is also where the album starts to truly take form. It is followed by “Sell Myself In,” another track that entertains the listener from the first second, only to end with a blaring guitar solo that ends all too soon.
Cell Phone Bikini’s main weakness is that it takes its time to really get going. Once it does, it doesn’t slow down, almost coming off like a mimic of the first of these solo releases — Sworn Virgins sans the electro overtones. It even plays games lyrically in an almost traditional Omar fashion, sharing lyrics across songs between the tracks “Wolf” and “Kisses are Fishes.” It does feel that maybe the album would perform a little better as an EP, cutting out the opening two tracks and starting with “Amarillo,” but I’m not going to complain or shun the entire thing for a few so-so tracks. It’s a rarity for an album from any artist to be filled exclusively with standout hits. By this point, Omar has hit us with six stellar releases, so two or three tracks is not about to bring me down.
So...any guesses which demos might these be?