Cynic
Carbon-Based Anatomy


3.0
good

Review

by TheSpaceMan USER (17 Reviews)
July 31st, 2012 | 14 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Cynic created a promising album that falls short in its presentation.

Music is a beautiful thing. When executed perfectly, it captures emotions into sound in a similar manner as painted art captures them into sight. Cynic are undeniably masters at this art, with each album collectively representing a clear direction and feeling. What they are aiming for in each release is blatant but cannot be put into words to describe exactly what that aim is, very much like human emotions themselves. Carbon Based Anatomy is no exception.

A glance at its cover art is a great preparation for what the musical experience is like (something I noticed is inherit in all of Cynic's discography). Psychedelia is present everywhere, forming an album with slow ambiance and tone-edited singing. The three longest songs are very easy listens complete with catchy choruses, great musicianship and sheer originality. Each are unique enough to be distinguishable yet clearly follow the same foot steps. The other half of the tracks are actually completely synth and instrumental, and never reach beyond the two and a half minute mark. Individually weak, they are all interesting to listen to and are short enough to serve a transitional purpose before growing stale. As such, Carbon Based Anatomy cannot be taken on through a song-by-song approach. This complements the album nicely, however, since Cynic clearly intended this to be a spiritual trip front to back.

This is surprisingly where the album fails. Its pretentious, bloated, and laughably short. One listen is so quick, the EP's "trip" is not worth remembering. Lack of defining moments that call for a respin are further hindered by catchy choruses that become annoying if a second listen is even attempted. Cynic seems to honestly be trying too hard at being "progressive" Their use of non-human vocals have grown stale and unoriginal (some could argue that it was stale by the end of Focus), and their complete disregard for a genre has turned into more of a gimmick then a quality. For lack of a better word, this album seems forced.

Despite being flawed, Carbon Based Anatomy is all throughout an interesting listen and musically impressive. The lack of boundaries in their approach to music warrants a few good songs that are good because they sound good, not because they are complicated or fast or even stand as a perfect ambassador for a genre. It is only revealed as a hollow record when looked at for its entirety, but that's exactly the approach Cynic forces you to take. Crafting such an idea into an EP was in their best interest, but ultimately gave them no room to standout and shine. Better luck next time.



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user ratings (634)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
Matthew D. French (4)
Cynic’s future looks bright....

Eli EMERITUS (4)
From the deepest parts of the Amazon, to all corners of the universe, Cynic's "Carbon-Based Anatomy"...

someguest (4)
Cynic fall deeper into new age philosophy and mellow out even further....


Comments:Add a Comment 
TheSpaceMan
July 31st 2012


2758 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

My first review, so please go at it hard for improvement. Ive lurked this sight long enough to know you guys will do fine at doing such

FictionalFlames
July 31st 2012


1517 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's good for a first review.

Your summary is a bit choppy, try adding the word a in between "created" and "record" in the first few words.

besides that it's a pretty good review, and you back up your argument.

conesmoke
July 31st 2012


5290 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Awesome EP, Box up my bones & the title track are the shit. I also love the ambiance & spacey stuff at the end "blown to the corners of the universe" etc.

someguest
July 31st 2012


21390 Comments


Cynic created record that is only revealed as hollow when looked at the way Cynic forces you to hear it.


What the fuck does this mean?

Digging: Pet Shop Boys - Please

J0ckstrapsFTW
July 31st 2012


3659 Comments


Is this as good as Traced in Air?

TheSpaceMan
July 31st 2012


2758 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I agree the summary is not the best, although I do think it makes sense in my head once you read the
review. But I guess that defeats the point of a summary huh?

And Traced in Air is alot better

ZedO
July 31st 2012


1096 Comments


gonna get this a listen

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
July 31st 2012


4458 Comments

Album Rating: 4.3

I actually really liked this, at least 4 in my opinion, but then again, I love everything these guys did. review is decent, man. nice job.

CrazyDiamond7
July 31st 2012


64 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Confusing summary aside, this was a pretty good first review. pos

This isn't as good as Focus, though that goes without saying, (haven't listened to traced in air yet), but it was an interesting experiment at least. The title track is awesome, and the ambient sections Really fit well with the rest of the album.

Digging: Saintseneca - Dark Arc

TheSpaceMan
July 31st 2012


2758 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

thanks for the feedback guys, clearly the summary isnt the best in the world and something ill work on if i review again. I hope i didnt come off as trashing the album too much, i did like the "filler" tracks the most to be quite honest and the second half of the title track blows anything Traced in Air had outta the water.

I really wish I could enjoy this more, it has the same feel/energy as Nunc Stans does, which was probably my fav off Traced but I stand by my review

conesmoke
August 1st 2012


5290 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"the second half of the title track blows anything Traced in Air had outta the water"

Bullshit!!!

How about nunc fluens + The space for this??

In my opinion most songs off traced slay everything on this (except the ambience, which, lets be honest.. doesn't really occur on traced)

This is still awesome though.

Graveyard
August 1st 2012


5817 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

focus is all you need

conesmoke
August 1st 2012


5290 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah focus is best, but at least they found more their OWN sound in traced, as opposed to a jazzified, proggified Death

TheSpaceMan
August 1st 2012


2758 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Textures> Rest of Focus > Traced > CBA



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