Chaos Over Cosmos have released the follow up to their excellent debut, The Unknown Voyage with a new EP, the self titled Chaos Over Cosmos.
Chaos Over Cosmos is a progressive metal, online, collaborative project originally created by Rafal Bowman and Javier Calderón. Two musicians who had never met each other and decided that being countries apart couldn’t stop them from making music together. Since the release of the debut album ‘The Unknown Voyage’ in September 2018 and its re-release with 2 new tracks in April 2019, Javier decided to leave Chaos Over Cosmos. Rafal asked Australian vocalist, Joshua Ratcliff, to join Chaos Over Cosmos, after hearing Joshua on his bands, Resurgence, debut album Voices. Rafal loved the lyrical content and Joshua’s aggressive hard rock/metal vocal style on Voices and thought that his vocal and lyrical style would make a perfect mix for the next wave of Chaos Over Cosmos.
We really enjoyed The Unknown Voyage and you can read our thoughts on the album here. We are also fans of Resurgence and their album, Voices, and you can read our review of that here. For us, the collaboration between two individuals we have a lot of time for is great news. Josh Ratcliff also created the artwork for the EP while it was mixed and mastered by Nekkomix. And just look at this amazing artwork!
Chaos Over Cosmos is three tracks long and weighs in at around the 19 minute mark in length. There are two vocal songs and one instrumental. They are all inspired by the written works of Isaac Asimov (I, Robot, The Bicentennial Man). The first track is called Cascading Darkness. It is over 7 minutes long and starts with a dreamy solo and solid drum beat before descending into a nice riff and drum blast with mechanical sounding backing. It has a progressive feel to it, maybe even a little industrial which goes nicely with Asimov’s works. The guitar skills on show are intense as we move from soaring leads to punchy riffs.
The vocals come in and have a nice edge to them, loads of ferocity comes through in the growled style. I love the utilisation of different vocal tones, getting deeper and then hitting hard with echoing yells. The chorus sees some clean lines come in, working in harmony with the uncleans to create an emotive soundscape. The second verse sees more cleans come in with each line bookended by a growled line. All the while we get pummelled by intense riffs and lifted by soaring lead guitars. The solo that follows is ambitious and brilliant, pulling your mind and spirit in different directions. One more chorus comes, with far reaching vocals, before we hit up some riffing and soloing to end what feels like one hell of a journey.
Consumed is next up and is even longer at 8 and a quarter minutes long. There is a more melancholic start to the melodic intro before it drops down into a mesmerising sound combining crunchy rhythm and a dreamy lead line. Sampling is used to good effect to create depth before Ratcliff destroys us with an extended roar. I love the riff in the verse. The crunch of drums, programmed or not, with the guitars is made for headbanging and the clean, power metal styled vocals work well with it. When the growled vocals come in a little later, they have so much intensity packed into them you can’t help but be impressed. Amongst all this great riffing and vocal delivery we get lead lines and soloing used as bridges to expert effect.
It does seem to get a little chaotic around the 6 minutes and 40 ish second mark as the drums and guitars go a little off tempo before dropping off into pure sampling. My raised eyebrow quickly drops back as they start adding instruments and vocals to the sampling building it back up to brilliance before it fades out over the atmospherics. We end on a much shorter instrumental, called Asimov, which is around 3 and a half minutes long. Based on everything heard thus far, you know Rafal can play so, as expected, you get an emotive and passionate song.
It starts off with powerful guitars and crashing drums before dropping off into gentle melody. This softer approach stays as the guitars start powering out a speedily played but majestic solo. It really has impact. A few piano keys bridge the track that suddenly springs to life with a speedy section coupled with a simple but effective riff. It plays out with this heavier style for a while before switching back into emotive guitars while keeping a nice crunch on the backing riff. It is very good but does fell a little disjointed at times, like 3 excellent short instrumentals glued together to make one.
Chaos Over Cosmos have released a little gem of an EP here. It really does a very good job of conveying images related to science fiction and particularly Isaac Asimov. The almost out of body, dream like guitar passages. The industrial and mechanical sampling and the drum tracks all add to the story and create an atmosphere that transports you into the music. The addition of Joshua Ratcliff is a masterstroke really too. This guy has a great voice, chock full of energy, power and emotion with a nice mix of tones too.
It is hard to do anything about it but if I did have a complaint, I always find programmed drums to lack the power of the real thing. In a weird way, it kind of works here what with the subject matter but still, there are occasions where you feel the drums should be shaking your bones but they rarely do. I am also not too sure that the ending track flows as well as it could do, though I still find it immensely enjoyable. Really though, this is a top notch EP and showcases two immensely talented artists working together despite being hundreds of miles from each other yet finding commonality in music. That is a beautiful thing.
Chaos Over Cosmos Links
Chaos Over Cosmos by Chaos Over Cosmos
The Final Score - 8/10