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Cognos – Cognos Award winner

Cognos
Cognos
by Paul LaPlaca at 05 November 2021, 8:49 AM

COGNOS is a fragment scissored off the Latin word "cognosco," which means "knowledge from personal experience". - WIKIPEDIA. This is an appropriate name for this mysterious, unknown band. The depths of musical dexterity on this self-titled debut is astonishing. The band effortlessly seams multiple styles in a kaleidoscope patchwork of prog, death, thrash, and metal. COGNOS takes familiar elements from all these styles and like waking from a dream, there are only fading wisps of what you thought you understood so clearly only moments before. Hints of DEVIN TOWNSEND, DARKANE, and CHRIS CAFFERY’S solo work peek through the clouds of rich, dissonant chord work. Vocals range from high tenor to guttural growls and they always keep you guessing as to what is coming next. Whoever they are, I am going to go out on a limb like a host on THE MASKED SINGER, and state unequivocally that one or more band members are decidedly Swedish. Something Gothenburg this way comes I thinks.

Here is a quote from the band- “COGNOS is music and a concept, born from the thirst of creating uneven mixes and sensations rarely found today. A project from no specific country with a line up we prefer to remain unknown. COGNOS links extreme styles with atmospheric ambience, trying to find the balancing point where GOJIRA meets VANGELIS, PETER GABRIEL embraces CORONER or even where ENYA converses with OPETH.”

Honestly, I find the more extreme fringes of these comparisons to be quite a stretch, but I appreciate the ambition. Any New Age elements are very much in the background and the core sound is unmistakable metallic. Those textures, particularly with layered, sparkling, clean guitars and keyboards are more cinematic and atmospheric than compositional when it comes to the actual songs. Chord voicings are very unique, especially when adding non-major triad tones. It is often the case with extreme and death metal music to have the dissonance create a feeling of foreboding, terror, and unease but here the music creates a yawning, thick chasm of sound that envelops you like cosmic waves.

Highlights of the album are “Pharos” and “Plenary Void”, both songs a melting pot of diversity and intrigue. There is a sense of journey here, traveling through complex webs of thought and sensation. COGNOS delivers an impressive debut with a depth and intensity unmatched by even the leaders in the wide playing field of prog and extreme metal. Highly, highly recommended.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Orb
2. Pharos
3. Cometary's Waltz
4. Plenary Void
5. Hierarch
6. If Skylines Collide
7. Tririzon
8. Monolitheor
Lineup:
Anonymous
Record Label: Willowtip Records
     


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