It’s Monday and Mondays suck, so let’s grind it out with Cognizant’s Cognizant.
It’s been a weekend of wicked indifference and cancelled plans. I felt like I needed to feature something really exciting. And if you haven’t yet heard the brutal, technical majesty of Cognizant, you’re missing out. I’ve been on this band since last October when I randomly came across them. And I’m kicking myself for not featuring them on my end of the year list, but hey, hindsight is 20/20.
You might have heard of Cognizant before, but under a different name: Amygdala*, who released EPiphany in 2015, and yes, that’s how it’s spelled. Cognizant is just a name change. Whether there was a line up change or not, I don’t know. But the Dallas, TX quintet is still technical, brutal, and fast as hell.
In a mere seventeen-minutes, Cognizant crush and destroy virtually every band in modern grindcore without breaking a sweat. Opening with “Hyper-Dimensional Inflation”, the band holds nothing back. The opening riffs and drumming bounce around the head. Nothing is straightforward with Cognizant; it’s all bizarre, placement or twisted time signatures. You know how you expect most bands to get straightforward and pummeling at some point? Yeah, Cognizant don’t play that game. They don’t give you a break.
What makes these guys so interesting and addicting is how they mash together some brutal, blasting riffs with incredible technical drive. It’s the madness of it all that weaves Cognizant into a tapestry of insanity. Take “Penumbra” for instance. The intro to the song is a blasts like a banshee. Then it feels like it cools off for a bit but it’s still rattling your head as it gears up for another attack. Other tracks like “Solipsism” give you the same treatment but with with a harder edge.
If you had ever imagined Gorguts or Pyrrhon fusing their sounds with Gridlink and/or Discordance Axis, then you’d have an idea of what you’re getting into here. I suppose it helps that their phenomenal drumming comes from none other than Brian Fajardo (P.L.F., Gridlink, Nosiear, amongst others). Cognizant is something that needs to be experienced. Words really can’t do the incredible musicianship/composition justice. It’s tech-grind in a straight jacket blasting through space. It’s otherworldly and incredible.
*There is another band under the name Amygdala that play a strain of vicious hardcore/punk and are awesome. Check them out too.