Friday, November 1, 2013

Cosmic Infusion - Cosmic Infusion EP - Album Review

Year: 2013

Whenever I check out a new band, if I see the words 'keyboard' anywhere in the line up, I automatically turn into a sceptic of the band’s capabilities. It is not that I hate the keyboards as an instrument. Its just that, over the years that I have been listening to metal, I have come across very few bands that have been able to incorporate this instrument in an effective way, that pleased my tastes. The rest of the time, the keyboards always felt like unnecessary additions and they felt over used in the music. The scepticism arose in the case of Cosmic Infusion too. But with only five songs, they managed to lay all my doubts to rest.

Having been around since 2003, the band had been plagued by a variety of issues, which forced them to disband. They reformed in 2012, and a year later, they have released their self titled debut EP.

Cosmic Infusion’s sound can primarily be described as Black Metal with symphonic overtones and an emphasis on melody. The album begins with the symphonic keyboard parts of Sushan Shetty, which carries a subtle melody, accompanied by the guitar tones of Amnish and Nakul leading into the opening verses of the track ‘Acronical Edge’. The music of Cosmic Infusion is fortunately, not one that is drowned in oversaturation of keyboard elements. Here, the symphonic keyboard parts works with the guitars and bass to give a haunting and almost gothic atmosphere.

Even with a clean production, Cosmic Infusion manages to sport a level of darkness which is triggered by their twisted melodies. The way the keyboard parts work with in unison with the guitar riffs is highly commendable. The vocals of Sushan is a shriek like croak that sounds rough and sick, suiting the overall tone perfectly. Even the clean vocals, like in the chorus of the track ‘Burial of Thy Own’ and the final verse in ‘Jouney’, manage to create a haunting feel.  The bass of Amey is adequately loud and it is good to hear amongst the other layers in the mix.

The aspect of their music, which I find highly appreciable, is how the various elements work in unison, without a single element taking up the limelight for itself. The band does not have a permanent drummer and the drumming in this EP is credited to Nandan, who manages to deliver a steady dose of double bass and fills. There are moments, where the keyboards and guitars get the opportunity to shine individually, like the opening sequences of ‘Journey’ and the licks on ‘Gothika’.

Lyrically, the band covers a wide range of topics including anti-christianity , satanic armageddon and even the dark corners of the cosmos. The album finishes off with the track ‘Crepheus – Bringer of the End’, which is a great example for a flawless blend of symphony and extreme metal. The self titled debut EP of Cosmic Infusion is a record, which establishes the band as a force to be reckoned with. It is not something that has never been heard before. Rather, it sets an example of how to execute a spectacular mix of symphony and metal, without sounding cheesy.

Rating: 87%

Cosmic Infusion is a part of the line up at Black Metal Krieg III cosponsored by Transcending Obscurity, India's only fest dedicated purely to Black Metal.

The EP can be streamed in its entirety below:

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