The OMys
  • Courtesy the artist
  • The O’My’s

If you like to nose around on the Reader‘s website, you’ve probably already noticed that we’re hosting a concert at Metro tonight to celebrate our 2015 Best of Chicago issue. If you don’t spend much time here, well, thanks for dropping by, and did I mention this concert yet? Doors are at 8 PM, music at 8:30. Tickets cost $15, and it’s open to ages 18 and up. Self-described Chicago “rock ‘n’ soul” band the O’My’s headline, and to make it easier for you to choose to attend (you should definitely attend), I’m posting a stream of their recent Keeping the Faith EP, which came out in February.

As vocalist and guitarist Maceo Haymes, explained in a recent interview, the O’My’s decided on that name for the new record in part due to a terrifying van crash they survived on a spring 2014 tour with ZZ Ward. “The van rolled over and ended up completely totaled,” he said. “Somehow, everybody came out safe. For us, I guess it was a turning point—the whole tour was. We’ve been around for awhile, so we’ve had a lot of different musicians come in and out of the band. This iteration of the group has been around for the past two years. It was a turning point for us because we all realized—[keyboardist] Nick Hennessey and myself in particular, because we’re the bandleaders and writers—that these are the musicians and friends that we trust, and decided to open up the process to them and bring them in in terms of recording.”

The O’My’s rambunctious, high-spirited fusion of soul, rock, and hip-hop definitely sounds like the work of a resilient group of musicians who enjoy one another’s company—I especially like the plush horns and fat, springy bass. Even “Pieces,” which starts out hushed, tense, and wracked with grief, eventually blooms into a bountiful chorus. You can listen to the whole EP below:

Philip Montoro has been an editorial employee of the Reader since 1996 and its music editor since 2004. Pieces he has edited have appeared in Da Capo’s annual Best Music Writing anthologies in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. He shared two Lisagor Awards in 2019 for a story on gospel pioneer Lou Della Evans-Reid and another in 2021 for Leor Galil's history of Neo, and he’s also split three national awards from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia: one for multimedia in 2019 for his work on the TRiiBE collaboration the Block Beat, and two (in 2020 and 2022) for editing the music writing of Reader staffer Leor Galil. You can also follow him on Twitter.