Hailing from Coacalco, a city on the fringe of Mexico City’s sprawl, Omar Suarez aka OMAAR wouldn’t be thought of as an ideal candidate to star in the world of abstracted instrumental grime and jagged club music, but over the past 18 months or so that’s exactly what the young producer has done. Having already performed at Mexico’s iteration of the Mutek festival, released the jaw dropping NO! EP on D.F. staple NAAFI and graced NTS with both a production mix and a recent contribution to NAAFI’s ongoing takeover shows, fans of OMAAR know the quality of his catalogue and ingenuity of his spars aesthetic, but it takes a little more digging to delve into the heart of Suarez’s music. And like many of the relatively nascent artist we feature, digging into OMAAR’s music can largely be performed on Youtube and Soundcloud, the latter platform offering a treasure trove of genre experiments, club tools and works in progress.
Much of OMAAR’s aesthetic is born out of Wiley’s Eski formula, but few artists approach the frigid sound palette with the care for space, silence and cataclysm quite like Suarez. His approach elicits the atemporal approach of early dubstep, as well as the techno and afrofuturisms of Detroit’s greats, all run through a lo-fi filter. Last year’s NO! EP is easily OMAAR’s most club-ready record and while most of his material is readily play-out-able, Bmore-indebted tracks like “TTHHUUGG” and “Sportswear” offer a certain propulsion absent in many of his more abstract experiments. Having that breadth is exactly what makes OMAAR such an intriguing artist and what makes trawling through his past work such a fun prospect. Suarez’s Astral Plane mix is, as we like it, heavy on originals with a few nods to Logos, Mumdance and Strict Face, unsurprisingly all proponents of the weightless sound. It’s brash, sci-fi-themed and more than a little jarring at times. And like OMAAR’s other mixes, it only offers brief insight into his body of work, but that’s more than enough for us here. Turn off the lights, dust your sub of and engage with OMAAR.