Archive for Cognitive

Cognitive – Cognitive

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on 4th July 2014 by Paul Macmillan

Released April 2014
Death metal
Released via Pathologically Explicit Recordings

Cognitive Cognitive

Ah, death metal! It’s been a bit since I reviewed something from your hallowed legions! We didn’t seem like the perfect match when we first met, but I was only a child then. In later years, while I still see your flaws, ours is a relationship to be cherished for all time. Well, mostly. When the collision between DM and pop rears its putrid, candy-coated visage, my finger starts twitching instantly, drawn inexorably towards the button labelled ‘rage quit’. It’s not a genre which was ever intended for conformity, and when it’s treated as such, it really gets my goat. And puts it in a Hot Topic shirt.

The first few seconds of Cognitive’s self-titled album momentarily fill me with the fear that this is just going to be another cookie-cutter, death-by-numbers botch job, but it doesn’t take them long to smash that preconception square in the face. There’s much referencing to the DM riff library of old, true, but it is done with such a casual flick of the wrist, that it translates as a successful exercise in tribute, and not a mere rip-off as is unfortunately common these days. They truly embody a confident and individual character in a genre that can, at times, be stale and lack the fangs and claws of the generation before.

From the shades of No Tolerance… era Man Must Die, to the hints of Spires smeared throughout, this is utterly compelling. There is always something to grab the attention, albeit it to throttle it violently before dumping it, sprawled on the deck, only to march onto the next willing victim. Broken up by the mid-point acoustic track Oceanic Erosion, which would sound equally at home on a folk record, the pasting begins anew with the epic introduction to Willingness Of The Weak, before returning to the bludgeoning death-thrash of Imbuing Of Wrath.

I’m falling for this album more with each consecutive listen. This is the sound of a band who are completely unafraid to push boundaries, which shunts them right to the top end of my list; heavy on the one hand, but with sensibilities of how to really write music on the other. The guitar solo in Regurgitated Existence is a particularly effective display of the potential for emotional beauty in extreme noise.

Shifting shape, texture and drive at various points, this album is well written, expertly performed and effectively arranged; a prime example of how it should be done! By rights, Cognitive could be standing shoulder to shoulder with some of the greats of death metal in the not too distant future. If you pine for the days when brutality relied on writing a riff rather than avoiding them at all costs, you are going to love this!!!


Paul Macmillan

Cognitive – The Horrid Swarm

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , on 14th November 2012 by hammersmashedlauren

The Horrid Swarm
Released 21st July, 2012
Technical Death Metal
Self Released

Only being an active band for a year now, Cognitive may not be too well known, but with the way they’re creating their music now, it’ll be a matter of time before their name gets spread around. With the release of their EP The Horrid Swarm, it branches from a sundry amount of metal genres but mainly sticking to the technical death sound. With underlying influences such as Nile and Spawn of Possession, any fan of death metal or metal in general will enjoy this EP.

The EP starts off immediately with In the Form of a Drone which is just a mix of brutal guitar riffs and punishing drums. I was personally taken aback by how clear and amped the sound was on this EP. I could clearly make out every instrument that was accompanying the low vocals which I believe made it easier to listen to. Especially on newer bands who may not be equipped with great recording equipment, I was definitely happy with how well they captured their musicianship in The Horrid Swarm.

I was also happy with the fact that there were 5 tracks to this EP. I feel that this gave more of a feel of what the band is capable of doing and it defined themselves as a band as well. Each song on The Horrid Swarm varied in content but it gave me that feeling of wanting to throw my computer chair across my room while forming a hole in the wall.

I highly recommend checking out Cognitive and seeing them live if you’re in the New Jesery and Pennslyvania areas. These guys deserve a ton of support and this album proves that they’re a talented band with passion and drive to deliver neck-breaking metal that appeases to anyone who supports brutal death metal.


Lauren Gowdy