This article written after an interview with Omega 3 was edited by Philip Gowman and first published on London Korean Links.
It’s been almost two years since they released their debut album and Omega 3 are now back, holding concerts again. As Alpha Beat has become one of my all time favourite albums, I was curious to learn what was going on. The band’s drummer, Choi Jae Hyuk, was kind enough to take some time to answer my questions.
Omega 3 formed naturally since Choi Jae Hyuk, Yun Jun Ho and Ko Kyung Chun were close and got together a lot – “Instead of having meals or tea together all the time we thought, ‘let’s find something else to do’”. What instruments were to be used was not important to them, but I had to ask about their constellation as the otherwise so common guitarist is instead a keyboardist. Jae Hyuk told me that their line up is common in jazz trios, so it wasn’t as new and extra ordinary as I had thought.
All members are involved in the song writing, but when they first started they were on a blank page not knowing which kind of music would be the result. As they recorded, they simply discussed what each member wanted to try. Not having the interference of an electric guitar actually helps in expressing Omega 3′s explosive sound, Jae Hyuk explained. Based around a 60s & 70s style piano and mellotron, boosting the drive on the bass and making good use of the cymbals has given them their strong and distinct sound. Their music has been described as progressive, modern rock and piano rock. The lyrics carry a great sentiment of yearning for people and affection. Jae Hyuk says that he’d like to believe that the music of Omega 3 is “honest music that moves people and gives them solace.”
Prior to Omega 3, Jae Hyuk was the drummer in Delispice while Jun Ho held the position of bassist in the same band. When Delispice released their 6th album in 2006, bom bom, both guys were in the line-up, and Kyung Chun, who started his musical career in Iskra and has appeared on numerous albums with other bands, helped out with organ and strings on a few songs. I was afraid that Omega 3 was a one album project and comforted myself with the Omega 3 influenced songs that had made it onto that Delispice album. Any similarities were unintentional, however, and there’ll be more of the real thing in not too long – a new album is in the works and Omega 3 are trying to get a feel for the new songs during the concerts this spring.
When asked about the future plans for Omega 3, Jae Hyuk answers: “First of all, we want to see our new album out sometime this year. However, like the formation of our band, above all we would like to stay healthy and happy and depend on each other and stick together for a long time.” I for one sincerely hope their wishes come true.