Exposé Online banner

Cobra High — Sunset in the Eye of the Hurricane
(Cold Crush 004, 2003, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2003-12-01

Sunset in the Eye of the Hurricane Cover art

I have learned to be wary when the mainstream press describes an artist as “progressive” – you never know what they really mean, since the vast majority of progressive music is almost certainly unknown to the writer. Cobra High is a case in point. I first heard of them when a local Seattle paper profiled them, comparing them with Yes (but without the pretense, of course). What “progressive” means in this case would seem to be arrangements slightly more complicated than your average alternative band (changing tempo in the middle of a song, oh my!), and keyboards that do something other than play block chords or arpeggios. They have much in common with some of the post-rock movement, though still tied to easily recognized songs rather than breaking free like Sigur Rós or Don Caballero. Whether by design or accident, they have hit on a nice combination of elements, though I find many of the keyboard sounds on the ordinary side. The guitar parts are what makes Cobra High interesting. Instead of power chords or strumming, there are repeating patterns somewhat like King Crimson. They seem to be playing at the edge of their abilities, with occasional awkward transitions or faltering tempo. The main problem with this debut is the quality of the sound: it is muddy throughout, with the drums muffled, the bass indistinct, and the guitars glossed over with reverb when they should jump out clearly. Nice demos, guys – can’t wait for the real album.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 28, 2003 releases

Related artist(s): Cobra High

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Phideaux - Friction – Phideaux (pronounced like "Fido") is New York singer/composer/multi-instrumentalist Phideaux Xavier. His debut release, Friction, is a dense and quite impressive piece of work. Featuring something in...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues