Cog – ‘Resonate’ (mp3)
I was gonna get on my soapbox and make some rant about the general state of the music “scene” and the scenesters and everyone’s love for dirty synths and all that kinda shit that pisses me off as a music fan because while everyone goes nuts for bands without bass players that believe Wham! was the best band of all time, there’s Australian bands like Cog that get overlooked.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of some of the cool kids’ bands, but when it comes to overall music brilliance and world-beating ability, it’s hard to look past Cog. They’re as good, if not better, than most of the bands that sell millions of albums overseas. They’ve constantly made amazing music ever since they started. In terms of the Sydney music scene, their residency at the Excelsior Hotel in Surry Hills is legendary – every Wednesday for three months they sold out the place, and they hadn’t even been together for a year! It helps that you’re playing music light years ahead of your peers, that your drummer is one of the best Australia has produced, and your live show is an phenominal tour-de-force.
So who are Cog exactly? Well, they’re a three piece from Bondi in Sydney, they were kicking around the Aussie scene for a couple of years and released two great but poorly recorded EPs called Just Visiting Part 1 & Just Visiting Part 2. Then in 2004 they jumped on a big ol’ jet airliner and travelled to Weed, California to record their amazing debut album The New Normal with producer Sylvia Massy-Shivy (Tool, R.E.M), which was released the following year It was the first time that Cog captured their massive live sound on a recording. The album shed some of the progressive rock/Tool comparisons Cog were generating, and it showcased a more mature and succinct act.
The band have also been quite political in the past – on one of their tours they screened the John Pilger documentary Breaking the Silence – The Truth and Lies on the War on Terror and much of their lyrical content deals with political issues. In their filmclip for ‘Run’, drummer Lucius Borich has “Bush, Howard, Blair Fuck Off” written on his drum kit and the filmclip itself was set in a detention centre to highlight the plight of refugees being detained by the Australian government. Check it out below!
A few quick notes to finish off – Justin Cotta of VAST fame was going to sing for the band. In 2003 Cog recorded a cover version of Leftfield’s ‘Open Up’ which opened them up (no pun intended) to a national audience. The band are about to go back to Weed to record their second album. They are planning on touring North America in February. They are touring Australia right now. Cog are the most promising act in Australia. Go!