Friday, 22 June 2012

CD Review: Cosmogenesis, by Obscura (2009)

There is plenty going on all over Cosmogenesis, the second studio album from Germany's Obscura. A lot of the music is good, some of it is great, and there are also unfortunate bits that should have never seen the inside of a recording studio.

Overall, Steffen Kummerer and his buddies deliver a unique and highly listenable hybrid of progressive, technical and melodic death metal. When Obscura clicks, as on Cosmogenesis opener The Anticosmic Overload, the sound is sharp, pregnant with possibilities, and full of pleasant surprises. The energy level is high and the better tracks like Universe Momentum and Infinite Rotation spark momentous revolutions.

Obscura challenge the premise of belonging to a single sub-genre, stubbornly carving out an individual identity. The album reaches a high point with the very melodic death metal-like Incarnated, a track enhanced with creeping prog elements but emphasizing a heroically doomed melody above all, riding on a clever bouncy riff. The instrumental Orbital Elements is an enchanting intergalactic journey, again placing the melody on the pointy end of the rocket, with modern jazz elements added to the fuel. Centric Fuel closes the album, and while the first five minutes of the track are merely acceptable, the final 2.5 minutes are variations on a majestic melodic metal theme that would not have been out of place on an Arch Enemy album.

But sometimes things do go wrong. Choir Of Spirits is an experiment that quickly turns into an oozing mess, and title track Cosmogenesis has too many ideas trampling each other in a hectic competition for breathing space.

Cosmogenesis is never lacking for innovation, with hits and misses sprinkled across time and space waiting to unleash a cosmic treat or trick.


Steffen Kummerer - Guitars and Vocals
Jeroen Paul Thesseling  - Bass
Christian Muenzner - Guitars
Hannes Grossman - Drums

Songlist (ratings out of 10):

1. The Anticosmic Overload - 9
2. Choir Of Spirits - 5
3. Universe Momentum - 8
4. Incarnated - 10
5. Orbital Elements - 8
6. Desolate Spheres - 7
7. Infinite Rotation - 8
8. Noospheres - 7
9. Cosmogenesis - 6
10. Centric Flow - 8

Average: 7.60

Produced by Obscura and V. Santura.
Recorded, Mixed and Mastered by V. Santura.

All Ace Black Blog Heavy Metal CD Reviews are here.

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