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Album Reviews : Cynic – Re-Traced

By on June 7, 2010

2774764After a 14 year hiatus, progressive metal’s best keep secret Cynic surprisingly reunited, and after successful run of American and European shows, subsequently released the inspired “Traced In Air” record. With an album that easily stands up to any of the modern day prog bands, does it really warrant a ‘remix’ EP?

Well, to answer this question in one word: No.

With the re-imaginings of four songs from “Traced…” retitled for some reason (“The Space For This” simply becomes “Space”) only the vocals remain from the original tracks, with the rest of the instrumentation being completely re-arranged

The two openers, “Space” and “Evolutionary”, are completely pointless, with all the dense soundscapes having been removed in favour of dull jazz-guitar passages and flat keyboard parts. “King” is a slight improvement, but distorted vocal effects in the middle section undo the fairly chilled atmosphere of the rest of the number. The only truly acceptable re-recording is the extremely mellow “Integral”, which shows off Paul Masvidal’s unique vocal styling’s being backed with delicate acoustic chords.

The new song on the record “Wheels Within Wheels” features exceptionally strong bass playing and melodic guitar leads, easily making it the EP’s highlight, but even then it’s nothing more than a better than average B-side.

“Re-Traced” is a completely pointless release from Cynic, with it being nothing more that something you’d listen to once out of curiosity and then never play again. It’s impossible to justify purchasing this EP, with the sheer quality of the original recordings completely leaving “Re-Traced” redundant. 4/10

Band: Cynic
Album: Re-Traced
Year: 2010
Genre: Progressive Metal
Origin: Miami, Florida
Label: Season of Mist/Riot!

Track Listing

1. Space
2. Evolutionary
3. King
4. Integral
5. Wheels Within Wheels


Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.