Montreal originals Osmosis Unlimited release their freshest album Music for Cool Cats, full of the classic reggae sound you’re used to, with some extra Montreal flavour. Who doesn’t like the coolest city in the world, right? Osmosis Unlimited is an ensemble of local musicians who have been brought together by John Jordan, who is and was involved in successful projects by the names of Me Mom & Morgentaler, The Kingpins, and The Planet Smashers.
Thirteen tracks of mostly solid beats and generally smooth instrumentals throughout, this album offers the reggae groove you’d be looking for in a ska album; great rhythm from one song to another, free-flowing subject matter and a warm tone overall. However, things start to get a little lost. There’s too much emphasis on vocal solos that are often off-key, too much gimmicky content about what it’s like to live in a specific borough, too much going in directions that are completely unnecessary and blow over the solid instrumental base, and humble vocals that are seriously lovely without all the extras. There exists a place for jokey content in music, especially within the lighthearted world of ska and reggae, but the sweet spot is a real thing. It seems a bit ridiculous and abusive of credibility to delve too far into trying to be funny, with a gimmick, but without trying to avoid sounding completely annoying and stupid. This is something that can harsh the best musicians into completely throwing away the perfect base they already have.
“Murky” and “Clown Paint” hit the nail directly on the head. Smooth from beginning to end, professional feel andtop-notch instrumentals.. Just the right amount of everything to form a nice mosaic of sound, just as a band SHOULD sound. These tracks are great starting points to discover more talent from Osmosis Unlimited, after all, it says it right in the name: Unlimited osmosis between all, to create a mosaic of differences all combined into something greater.
Written by Talia Plante
*Edited by Dominic Abate