Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Cognizance - Inquisition & Cognizance (Demo 2014)

Self Released 2013
1.Clones of the Night Sky 2.The Perennial Struggle 3.Epistemology
4.Defying a Natural Process
Yorkshire based duo Cognizance are a studio based death metal project that utilises the efforts of countless guest musicians. Debut e.p. ‘Inquisition’ starts with opening track ‘Clones Of The Night Sky’ and what an introduction to the band this is. Blasting drums accompany brutal and technical guitars which when combined absolutely pummel. There is a melodic edge to the guitars which really stands out when compared to many brutal death metal bands. The band come across as a ‘Unique Leader Records’ style of band, brutal and effortlessly technical with a melodic edge all extremely well produced and balanced – great start! ‘The Perennial Struggle’ follows on in suitably brutal fashion with more of the same except there is more of a technical edge on display, the guitars switching from dazzling and technical riffs to brutal and pummelling sledgehammer sections with great ease. There are a lot of guitar solos utilised which in places are reminiscent of Cynic, not that the band sound in any way like that, just the way the solos are phrased and played. ‘Epistemology’ is another short, sharp and technically brutal lesson in how to play technical death metal and play it well. More speed used this time round; the blast beat sections really show the band at their best. The mix of these faster sections and the more technical and slower melodic passages works extremely well, not necessarily unique in the genre, but definitely unique to the UK. Closing this short e.p. is ‘Defying A Natural Process’ which begins life very technically, the song structure really been mixed up and showing the bands talents off brilliantly. It almost sounds out of control but you just know these guys know exactly what they are doing such is the standard of musicianship on display. Musically there’s a touch of Atheist, and again Cynic, to their sound. However, the brutal and guttural death metal vocals really set them aside from such bands. Four tracks of technical and brutal death metal; this is a highly impressive introduction to the band. The standard these guys have set is very high and it would be fair to say you’d be hard pushed to find a brutal death metal band in the UK playing to such a standard. Comes very highly recommended.
9 Out Of 10
Self Released 2014
1.Assemblage of Ancient Authority 2.Deep Geological Disposal
2014 sees the band release a two track demo and again, the band utilised the talents of guest musicians to help out. One of the better known names to appear being drum god Romain Goulon. Opening track ‘Assemblage Of Ancient Authority’ shows a marked improvement in the bands ability. There’s more of a technical edge to their sound and approach to song writing and the addition of such a well renowned drummer has boosted the overall effectiveness of the music. It really adds new bite to their songs and gives them a much darker and sinister sound. Having said that, the melodic solos are still being used and the comparisons to the likes of Atheist and Cynic still stand true. ‘Deep Geological Disposal’ again blasts open unmercifully and again the improvement in the bands playing and song writing is more than apparent. The stop start technical passages are mixed brilliantly with the faster blast beat heavy sections and move from one to the other seamlessly and effortlessly. It’s a real shame there are only two tracks on offer, and listening to them it’s hard to believe these have just been produced for a demo. The standard in the production and playing is so high that there’s no faulting this at all. Hard to believe these guys are unsigned, surely that won’t be the case for too much longer? Another master-class in technical and brutal death metal, only two tracks but they again come highly recommended. If you haven’t heard these guys, get on it now, you won’t be disappointed!
9 out of 10

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