Cynic Dive Deep on Cinematic ‘Mythical Serpents’ + Announce Guest-Filled ‘Ascension Codes’ Album
Cynic have announced the details to their long-awaited new album, Ascension Codes, and have debuted "Mythical Serpents," the first track off the ambitious and guest-filled record that will be released on Nov. 26.
"I invite you to sit back, close your eyes, and listen to 'Mythical Serpents' as a fully realized piece of music. No phones or screens necessary, just the power of sound communicating directly into the ears of your heart," said singer and guitarist Paul Masvidal, inviting fans to soak in the six-and-a-half-minute odyssey without distraction.
"Mythical Serpents" explores a dynamic range of sounds that speaks to Cynic's progressive and fusion sensibilities as well as finding new ways to reintroduce flashes of extremism in which the aggression has been blunted by a buttery smooth, airy production.
Listen to the new song further down the page.
"In the coming weeks, Cynic will be revealing further details on the constellation that is Ascension Codes, including a 'Mythical Serpents' animated video, featuring the artwork of Martina Hoffmann & Robert Venosa. Stay tuned," added Masvidal.
This new album, Cynic's first since issuing Kindly Bent to Free Us in 2014, comes after a tragic 2020. Drummer Sean Reinert, who left the group in 2015, and bassist Sean Malone both died last year and were an integral part of the band's pioneering sound. Rather than seeking a new bassist, Masvidal brought in keyboardist Dave Mackay, a British pianist, writer, producer and Moog/vintage synth enthusiast.
"He's got a vast jazz harmonic vocabulary," said Masvidal of Mackay, "which is what's needed in the context of Cynic's music, especially for bass lines. I knew that I could never replace Malone. Anyone I would find would be expected to play like him, and that's not fair to another musician. And things were too fresh for me with the loss of Malone, so I had to go somewhere new. With Mackay, I heard his groovy left-hand approach, and how musical he was across the board having played with a variety of musicians and styles. I realized he would bring something fresh to the table, and he provided a space for me to start again with a completely different instrument and forgo any traditional ideas I had about what Cynic bass lines should sound like."
Drummer Matt Lynch, who joined Cynic in 2017, rounds out the Ascension Codes recording lineup and a list of guest contributors can be seen below.
Michael Berberian, president and founder of Season of Mist, who will release Cynic's new album, commented, "I have, by now, released close to one thousand albums. None have been more dramatic, none have even been more difficult than this one. I can’t listen to Ascension Codes without goosebumps, a mixed feeling of pride – because it’s a musical milestone, but it also contains a lingering layer of sadness. I hear Paul’s pain on this record. I can feel it, I can touch it. But it’s transcended. 'Art is to console those who are broken by life,' said Van Gogh. Here is a demonstration of that."
Ascension Codes comes out on Nov. 26 and can be pre-ordered here. View the album art and track listing beneath the video player for "Mythical Serpents."
Paul Masvidal – Guitars, Vocals, Lyrics
Dave Mackay - Bass Synthesizer, Keyboards
Matt Lynch - Drumscapes
Guitar Codes ^ Artifacts: Dark
Voice Code Activations: Anrita Melchizedek
Reptilian Collective: Max Phelps
TWO Soloscape: Plini
Crystal Bowl Attunements: Michael Devin
Light Language Teachers: Amy Correia ^ Joshua Leon
DLB MetaTerrestrial: Ezekial Kaplan
Cynic, "Mythical Serpents"
Cynic, Ascension Codes Album Artwork + Track Listing
02. "The Winged Ones"
04. "Elements and their Inhabitants"
06. "Mythical Serpents"
07. "Sha48*8. 6th Dimensional Archetype"
09. "DNA Activation Template"
11. "Architects of Consciousness"
15. "In a Multiverse Where Atoms Sing"
17. "Diamond Light Body"