Record review: Chaosmic's Sunborn | Record Review | Indy Week
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Record review: Chaosmic's Sunborn 

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The upstart Raleigh metal quartet Chaosmic have teased the release of their debut album, Sunborn, for months. "We're super excited about the mastered versions," they wrote on Facebook in March. "So excited that we wanted to share a new song." Previewing an album with a single is elementary music publicity, of course, but the consistent earnestness of Chaosmic's tone is especially endearing. Everyone in this band is a veteran of at least one loud area act—Bedowyn, Elom, Blackwood Haze, Ungrained. Their excitement for this new venture, though, threads throughout the promising Sunborn like they're kids.

The eight-track debut flirts with metal's extremes but maintains a melodic center. The dynamic voice of frontman Aulden Smith moves between harsh growls and clean singing. On "Communion," he leads the way between death-metal barrage and blues-rock swing. With a knack for fusing prog exuberance and metal force, guitarist Jim Cox provides a nimble counterpoint. Marc Campbell and bassist Adam Cohen offer a steady foundation beneath these shifting sounds.

The enthusiasm becomes clear through the abundance of ideas they harness and manage. It guides the switch between emotive, mid-tempo hard rock and scorched death metal during "Spoils of Pyrrhus." It drives the Baroness-worshipping intro to "Desert Grave." Whether bounding joyfully between styles or nodding to their influences (a cavalcade of heavy, accessible acts that balance mainstream appeal and metal bona fides, like Mastodon and Deftones), Chaosmic move with the verve of a new band. The feeling is infectious.

Given the members' lengthy résumés, Chaosmic also play with proficiency. But the thrills of Sunborn are less a result of experience and ability and more the product of powerful chemistry among four players, powered by the prospect of what's to come.

Label: self-released

This article appeared in print with the headline "Age of enthusiasms."

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There's bass in this. It's not a duo, at least in the recordings. …

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Most Recent Comments

Where is the Q and A with Pepper?

by Alex Marsh on Record Review: Hardcore Titans Corrosion of Conformity Bring Pepper Keenan Back Into the Fold (Record Review)

There's bass in this. It's not a duo, at least in the recordings. …

by Steve Grothmann on Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump (Record Review)

Remember that time the "journalist" took to the comments section to fire off a snarky response when called out on …

by JayDubz on Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump (Record Review)

Pretty sure that if the press release we received had mentioned Chris Grubbs, the article would have reflected that crucial …

by David Klein on Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump (Record Review)

Pretty sure John Meier hasn't been in this band for quite some time and Chris Grubbs wrote and recorded this …

by JayDubz on Record Review: Raleigh's Naked Naps Explore Urgency on Year of the Chump (Record Review)

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