This two-piece band creates a very full, original and epic sound that sounds nothing like any other band you’ve ever heard of. Sure, you may be able to hear elements and influences from other bands, but this hybrid genre hopping band craft a jewel all their own.
While I can hear the Black Metal influence, through trademark blast beats and shrieking vocals, ‘Gin’ is a mish mash of various styles. One moment you’ll hear a traditional sounding Black Metal passage, the next a tribal Tool inspired jam out, and finally a tripped out quiet moment full of chanting and crooning; its quite a diverse album, and much more realized and progressive than Cobalt’s previous efforts. First of all, ‘Gin’ sounds nothing like previous Cobalt albums. There is a heavy Tribal-Metal vibe not unlike Tool. Black Metal still comprises the main sound, but the drums are much more adventurous, complex, and all over the place in terms of genres.
The drum work here is simply amazing, and easily the star of the show, switching genres and styles on the fly, never sounding constrained or held back. Drum sticks fly over toms at lightning speed, very reminiscent of Danny Carey, there is boundless double bass, blast beats, death metal patterns: you name it, this guy does it, and does it very well. There are so many amazing tribal breakdowns on this album led by the drummer, and they simply blow my mind every time I hear them.
The guitar riffs seem at times both simplistic and deep, either locked in a groove or participating in Black Metal tremelos and gloomy riffs. The vocals come in three different forms: Black Metal shrieks, chanting, and some rare singing. While its all pretty good, some of the lyrics seem silly. I was very disappointed that they didn’t add in some bass guitar. I think I heard bass in maybe one song, while the rest of them were devoid of that essential bass guitar sound field, which would round out their sound even more.
Any complaints I may have with the lyrics do nothing to diminish the overall quality of this album though, even with its raw production ‘Gin’ is an epic listen with some of the most impressive drumming I have ever heard. ‘Gin’ is surely Cobalt’s finest album, their epic masterpiece and is recommended to all metal heads and music lovers.