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Cosmograf - The Man Left In Space CD (album) cover





3.89 | 240 ratings

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4 stars Cosmograf's 2013 release "The Man Left In Space" is an intriguing and atmospheric journey filled with some amazing lead guitar and a feast of interesting themes that are worth contemplating well after the music has died away.

Ostensibly this concept album revolves around Sam, an astronaut who, as the title suggests, is cut adrift, alone, in the depths of space. In reality it is an allegorical tale revolving around themes that affect many of us in modern life such as ambition and our perceptions of success. The idea works well and we're drawn into Sam's lonely encapsulated world with the dispassionate voices of computers his only companions.

Many of the greatest aspects of this album are showcased on the second track, "Aspire, Achieve". There's gorgeous acoustic guitar and a great vocal melody interspersed with some blazing hard rock riffing reminiscent of Deadwing-era Porcupine Tree. The lead guitar in the latter half of the song is some of the best I've heard in years. Performed by Robin Armstrong, the architect behind all things Cosmograf, it really is worth the price of admission alone. There are many guest guitarists on this album, which adds a distinct flavour to many of the tracks, but it's evident from this performance that Robin could have carried these duties admirably all on his own.

I'll also single out the title track as a prog masterpiece. The interplay of acoustic and lead guitar in the intro is phenomenal. There's a number of phases and emotions as the song runs its course and the musicianship is top notch. It's also the point on the album at which most of the themes come to a head, so in that regard it serves as the centrepiece. As it fades a woman's voice implores "Think of me always", which is one of the more touching moments as there's an injection of humanity into Sam's world.

The use of sound effects, voice actors and samples is expertly carried out on this album and really creates a unique atmosphere. The only facet that left me wanting was that I struggled to form an emotional connection with the protagonist, but in any case this didn't detract from my enjoyment of the music or the performances on this album.

If you're looking for a well conceived concept album with some stellar performances then you can't go wrong with this one.


bonestorm | 4/5 |


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