Review: Cower ‘Celestial Devastation’

It’s hard to know where to start with this one, as the follow-up to their acclaimed debut Boys, is a record that pushes the boundaries even more than before. The band explore further into the realms of gothic darkness but still with a kick, which highlights Cower‘s, a collaborative project of three friends, own distinct flavour to this new record.

Cower 'Celestial Devastation' Artwork
Cower ‘Celestial Devastation’ Artwork

Each member brings their own distinct flavour to this new record as they celebrate a lifetime of music exploration together. With Tom Lacy (Yards, The Ghost Of A Thousand), Wayne Adams (Petbrick, JAAW, Big Lad) and Gareth Thomas (USA Nails, The Eurosuite) Celestial Devastation explores the idea of technology becoming the guiding light in our lives, for better or worse.

It all starts with the slow, brooding piece of music We Need To Have The Talk accompanied by a piano, but it really doesn’t prepare you for what is coming next as Summoner kicks in and starts pummelling away at your head.

an album of chaos, diversity and excellence…

It’s a meandering piece of music throughout, or as Tom Lacey puts it ‘this is the first project where all those experiences and eclectic tastes have come together’ and it’s got a heavenly goth vibe through the spine of the songs. A smidge of Depeche Mode, with a soupçon of Nine Inch Nails mixed with Gary Numan is the exemplary Hard Coded In The Souls Of Men being a fine example of this haunting arrangement as the band members are ‘all goths at heart’.

Compared with the post-punk affair of the first album, this second offering is far more synth heavy as Wayne Adams proclaims that ‘the Cower musical world has been expanded into a psychedelic gothic, synthetic, post-punk land of noise’ and songs such as Deathless & Free and False Flag showcase their diverse range of talents perfectly, as they are soulful, yet punchy and speaks to the ‘weird cult of silicon valley’.

The more you listen to these songs, the more lost you get in the composition as they really draw you in and make you think about why we, as a race, have given up thinking for ourselves and leave it to algorithms more and more to make decisions for us. The final two songs, title track Celestial Devastation and Bury Me In The Lawless Lands Of The West are both powerful pieces of music, with the latter having a more catchy vibe to end an album of chaos, diversity and excellence.

Label: Human Worth
Band Links: Bandcamp | Spotify | Instagram

Scribed by: Matthew Williams