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Gordian Knot - Gordian Knot CD (album) cover


Gordian Knot


Experimental/Post Metal

3.92 | 151 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Gordian Knot, the supergroup formed by Cynic bass master Sean Malone, features a large gathering of Chapman stick players as well as some gifted guitarists (Glenn Snelwar and Watchtower fret-dancer Ron Jarzombek) and his Cynic mate Sean Reinert behind the kit. Gordian Knot is a metaphor for a problem that is incredibly complex. One listen to the music and you'll determine that's a fitting name for this band. They take a big cue from 80s and 90s Crimson (small wonder, since Trey Gunn's on board), but add an Eastern element to the mix. It almost sounds like some of prog metal's finest got together and fused Discipline with THRAK and then chose to throw in Led Zeppelin's Physical Graffiti for laughs.

The presence of three Stick players (Malone, Gunn, and DT bass maestro John Myung) ensures this will be a polyrhythmic ride, and Sean Reinert manages to get by all by his lonesome, keeping more beats than one man should. Despite the metal credentials of the members involved, this album only qualifies as metallic in certain passages. However, it is not soft in any way; the dissonant trance of the album is anything but soothing. The band make impossibly complex rhythms and patterns seem simple, and the tasteful aspect of this album is surprising. The only problem is that it fails to excite on the first few listens, and the compositions seem boring until you analyze them and discover how insane they truly are.

Fans of King Crimson will certainly want to try this out. Cynic lovers won't be disappointed either, as Malone and Reinert show that their skill has in no way waned in the years of inactivity. This is by no means essential, but it is one of the handful of prog supergroups that manages to overcome ego and produce cohesive music.

Grade: C+

1800iareyay | 3/5 |


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