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Monday, September 27, 2010

Cynic - Traced In Air

After fourteen years of inactivity death metal turned progressive metal band Cynic announced that they would release a LP later that year. Traced In Air, their second LP released fifteen years after their first LP Focus. Cynic keeps some of their early death metal vocals but relies heavily on the soft vocals combined with the use of a vocoder.   Having eight tacks and being only thirty-three minutes long takes the short but sweet approach. This album is sandwiched between tracks Nunc Fluens and Nunc Stans. These two tracks juxtapose each other being complete opposite, both different philosophies of time. Nunc Fluens, latin for "flowing now", is the belief in time and the flow of it through eternity, never beginning nor stopping. Nunc Stans, latin for "abiding now", is the belief that time itself does not exist and that any distinction between now, before and the future do not exist. Traced In Air starts off with Nunc Fluens which is slightly reminiscent of Tool's "Third Eye" and this by all means is a positive thing. Following Nunc Fluens is The Space For This, taking all the energy and momentum from the previous track and propelling it forward. Evolutionary Sleeper is the next track which in some way is synonymous with what the band and this album are. Also probably the best track on the album, or at th every least tied with the fourth track Integral Birth. Which at mid way through sounds ever so slightly like Queen, but only for a brief moment. With such an amazing first half of the album it is so disappointing that the second half cannot keep the momentum going. The Unknown Guest, the fifth track other than fading in after Integral Birth fades out just does not compare to the cohesiveness that the first half had. Which seems like more of an after thought than anything else. However Traced In Air snaps back into shape with Adam's Murmur, a refreshing track after The Unknown Guest. King of Those Who Know, the longest track of the album is decent if it was not for the end which seems drawn out more than anything else. Traced In Air concludes with Nunc Stans, better than Nunc Fluens and a great way to complete the album.