Blast Rites: Cognizant – Inexorable Nature Of Adversity Review

Seven long years ago, these Texan tech-grinders released their self-titled debut, an absolutely blistering blastfest of twisted riffing, relentless pummeling, and unstoppable intensity. That one felt futuristic, born of a similar almost sci-fi-sounding sharpness akin to modern Antigama, built on discordant guitar voicings woven intricately atop a base of pulverizing ferocity.

Release date: September 11, 2023. Label: Nerve Altar / Selfmadegod / Rescued From Life.
Now, all these years and a handful of splits later (including a live one with Antigama), Cognizant returns for LP2, and though the world around us has changed drastically, not much at all has changed in the band’s approach. Which, of course, is a good thing, because … well, if ain’t broke, right?

Raging right from the get-go with the devastating skronk of “Paralysis,” Inexorable Nature Of Adversity proves immediately. that the tandem of Irving Lopez and Alex Moore certainly hasn’t run out of killer dissonant riffs. From there, it’s nonstop machine-gun bursts of one-minute savagery, through the back-to-back headspinners of “Seizures” and “Ataxia,” the weirdo Voivod-ian diminished tones of “Devoid,” the moody-arpeggios-atop-blastbeat drive of “Squander”…

There are no bad tracks, no missteps, no noise experiments or doomy dirges or forays down any grind-adjacent pathways (although “Egotism” does slow down to what is relatively a “stomping” pace). There is only pinpoint-accurate tech-grind mastery, propelled by Bryan Fajardo’s utterly unrelenting blasting, and pushed to the red-line by Kevin Ortega’s blast-furnace bellowing.

Like the best grindcore, Inexorable Nature is an album initially characterized by sheer aggression, but with each subsequent listen (and once you start, there will be many, because it’s an addictive little bastard), each of these tracks unfold a bit, little bits and pieces begin to poke forth – a guitar squeal there, a perfectly landed drum fill, a lock-step rhythmic shift… It’s a meticulously crafted explosion, a strafing run with nary a misplaced bullet, the perfect killing machine.

So yes, I’m a bit over the moon about Inexorable Nature Of Adversity, if you couldn’t tell. Albums like this one don’t come around all that often (once every seven years, it would seem, at least for Cognizant, and hopefully that pace can quicken). Alongside the new Gridlink, Inexorable Nature is easily one of the greatest grind albums of the year. Don’t miss this.

Posted by Andrew Edmunds

Last Rites Co-Owner; Senior Editor; born in the cemetery, under the sign of the MOOOOOOON...

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