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Cerebrum - Cosmic Enigma CD (album) cover

COSMIC ENIGMA

Cerebrum

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.09 | 3 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Cosmic Enigma" is the 2nd full-length studio album by Greek death metal act Cerebrum. The album was released through Amputated Vein Records in May 2013. Cerebrum released their full-length studio album "Spectral Extravagance" in 2009, which featured a rather prolific guest musician in drummer George Kollias (Nile). The band apparently still haven't found a suitable drummer because Kollias has laid down the drum tracks for "Cosmic Enigma" too. Another significant lineup change has taken place since the debut album as lead vocalist Apollon Zigomalas has left Cerebrum and guitarist Jim Touras has taken over the lead vocal duties in addition to playing guitar. Bassist George Skullkos was already added to the lineup in 2009, but this is his first studio recording with the band. Guitarist Mike Papadopoulos (who also handled bass on "Spectral Extravagance (2009)" is still with the group.

Despite the lineup changes "Cosmic Enigma" still sounds like Cerebrum, which means technically well played and semi-progressive death metal both influenced by early nineties US death metal like Morbid Angel, but also by more progressive death metal acts like Atheist. On "Cosmic Enigma" the technical part of the band's sound has taken the high seat though and the more old school death metal part of the band's sound is not as dominant as it was on "Spectral Extravagance (2009)". This is basically brutal technical death metal with some pretty odd jazzy interludes thrown in. Not completely unlike what Cryptopsy did on their 2012 self-titled 7th full-length studio album.

The musicianship is excellent although the monotone and unintelligible growls aren't that interesting (and they are too low in the mix too). I much prefer Apollon Zigomalas growls, which were brutal but intelligible.

"Cosmic Enigma" is probably a treat to those who enjoy brutal technical death metal with the occasional progressive/jazzy part thrown in, but personally I can't help feel that the music sounds a bit "constructed" (technical for the sake of it) and that some of the tempo changes or changes between sections don't flow that well. To my ears Cerebrum are actually best when they play more straight forward death metal (which they do in some sections) and leave the technical noodling behind. I'm also listening for hooks to hang on to and have found very few, which means that the album isn't that memorable. Issues aside "Cosmic Enigma" is still a quality release on many levels and a 3.5 star (70%) rating is warranted.

UMUR | 3/5 |

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