Review Summary: Poised on the very cusp of greatness yet ultimately held back by what makes it so great.
CynosiC hails from Athens, and it would be a shame to discount the talent of this one man industrial act. Georg Psaroudakis creates some of the most tasteful, well done tracks in recent memory on his debut A Deity In Pain
; innovative and with a decidedly ambient quality A Deity In Pain
is one of the strongest debut's listeners are likely to hear in the genre.
A low, horror like drone greats the listener on the opening track "To Spread The Chaos," signaling the beginning of Psaroudakis's multiple genre influences. Rather than blast the listener with heavy beats and even heavier distorted vocals CygnosiC chooses the lasting appeal of low key-synths and restrained drums. Psaroudakis's vocals are distorted but refrain from getting into aggro-tech distorted territory, making it relatively easy to decipher the lyrics rather than have it become a labor of love. The fast paced synth-line seems to almost escape the tightly bound hold that is placed around it, only to have the sound of a choir distinguish all chances of the track ever evolving into some generic 145bpm monster.
Restraint is a good way to describe CyngosiC's sound, Psaroudakis's self control and, if his bio is to be believed, drive to make something different are readily apparent in each track. Even the samples used are strange and seemingly odd choices that manage to mesh perfectly with the sound of the album; "One O Two" and "You Stink Of Fear" are the prime examples here, though the former does tend to get a bit monotonous at times when compared to the variety offered by the latter. Another feather in A Deity In Pain
's hat is the way the drums and synth's compliment each other; while one might take the stage from time to time they are never become wild or disharmonious, and each is given it's own time to shine.
One of the black marks against A Deity In Pain
is also one of it's strengths, in an album so restrained it's hard for there to be many standout moments, and if one had to be chosen it seems that the peak of the album comes quite early and leaves abruptly; the choice to place "To Spread The Chaos," "Luna Obscura," and "Zero Tolerance" back to back makes to album a bit heavy in the beginning. "The Lag of Time" later tries to climb those heights, but is too little too late to make a real difference. Closing the album with a remix has always seemed like a strange choice, and actually hinders the albums flow due to CynosiC's sound being so constant; evolution, however minimal, is always a welcome addition to an electronic album and "Luna Obscura (Chaotic Mix)" hinders this ideal.
In spite of the few complaints CynosiC's A Deity In Pain
remains a great album, one whose multi-genre influences and masterful use of minimalistic buildups push it above the many other genre debut's. Though the album never progresses very far it does show that progress can be made without using many of the genre standard sounds and techniques, Psaroudakis and his wish to create something different largely succeeded. A Deity In Pain
is enjoyable, I hope the project finds a following rather than flail about until it's death.