The Cosmic Year

Cosmics - The Cosmic Year ©2008 Lion Music
1. Big Bang
2. Life Birth
3. Giants Domination
4. Chicxulub
5. Global Extinction
6. Omination
7. History Begins
8. Emperors and Gods
9. Voyages of Discovery
10. The Last Second

You know you have a problem when it takes longer to read and absorb the "concept" behind an album than listen to the album itself, especially when the album itself is longer than the line at your local AT&T store when the iPhone came out. Or maybe it just feels that way because it contains more notes, key changes and time signature shifts than King Crimson's entire catalogue (including remasters and live albums).

Superhuman drummer Virgil Donati, of Planet X f/shame, is the main big name on this instrumental progressive metal extravaganza, and while his athletic drumming abilities can be put to very effective use when an adult is around to rein him in, this is not one of those instances. Instead, he's surrounded by a bunch of hyperactive, hyper-technical prog metal musicians who seem to be encouraging each other to play more, faster, and longer than anyone really should be allowed to.

The music, if you can call it that, is a very dense amalgamation of very complicated, very conceptual, very numerous black dots thrown onto a very thick wad of sheet music paper. There are echoes of approximately 277 complex progressive metal bands in there, including the entire Shrapnel catalogue from 1984 through 1992, hints of Planet X, as well as every single guitar solo Yngwie Malmsteen ever committed to tape. What I couldn't find, however, was personality and musicality, but that's probably because my brain was too exhausted from the sheer complexity of the whole thing.

If you like listening to music with a calculator, this album is for you. If you like listening to music with your ears, mind and heart, I recommend skipping this with both feet.

Review by Rog the Frog Billerey-Mosier

Review date: 11/2008

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