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Album Review

The third studio long-player from the Indianapolis-based progressive metal unit, the eOne/Good Fight Music-issued Language is also the first collection of new music from the Contortionist to feature the talents of Last Chance to Reason vocalist Mike Lessard, who replaced new father Jonathan Carpenter after he left the group amicably in 2013 to focus on his family. The nine-track album, which was preceded by the singles "Language I: Intuition" and "Primordial Sound," debuted at the number 52 slot on the Billboard 200 chart.

Customer Reviews

“Cynic-core” doesn’t mean anything

Regarding the people who would lead you away from this record:

"Primordial Sound" is one song that as a whole is definitely influenced by Cynic. The rest of it seems to be a range of influence, from King Crimson, to Planet X, to Porcupine Tree, all molded together in a way that has never been done before. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why anyone would look down on having influences as diverse as these. This is how music progresses. Would you rather them be influenced by Asking Alexandria? Neither would I.

This band is important because they are pushing the very essence of "progressive" music. Maybe you can't get into it, maybe there aren't enough hooks for you, but they are subconsciously influencing the next generation of metal music makers, including myself. This is a fact.

Bottom line: the people that have been poorly reviewing this record publicly have made up their minds, and there's nothing to be done about that (and invented a new word, "Cynic-core," so bravo on that). Taking in this record with open ear and open mind is the only way to appreciate what the band is doing. My prediction is that The Contortionist will be touring with Cynic pretty soon; if that's the case, that's awesome and they deserve it.

In conclusion, are there parts of the record that are not as strong as others? Of course there are. But as a whole, this is one hell of an album and I encourage anyone who is looking for a refreshing new take on metal music to check out “Language.”

Can't wait!

Just preordered a physical copy from their website yesterday (which you should also do, by the way- it gives the band more support and you get cool signed things too) , and after hearing the first single, I'm super excited for the album. It seems they've matured even more as a band, and they're venturing further into the realm of jazzier progressive metal. It's a natural progression from their last release, Intrinsic, which was the first album where they truly experimented with such styles. Also, even though I really enjoyed exoplanet, I've gotta say- I'm glad that The Contortionist left all the excessively chuggy generic deathcore stuff behind. This new material is beautiful.

Intriguing, joyful listen.

These guys are changing and straying away from the rest. Love their approach. Very original sound, almost like a modernized pink Floyd. The music is unique and has great flow. I like the dynamics of the heavy to soft progressions and overall feel is phenomenal. Great work guys, looking forward to the rest of the album.


Formed: 2007 in Indianapolis, IN

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Based out of Indianapolis, Indiana, progressive metal quintet the Contortionist draw from influences as diverse as Meshuggah, Dream Theater, Isis, Rush, and Pat Metheny. Formed in 2007 around the talents of vocalist Jonathan Carpenter, guitarists Robby Baca and Cameron Maynard, bass player Christopher Tilley, and drummer Joey Baca, the band released a pair of EPs (Shapeshifter and Apparition) in 2008 and 2009, respectively, before unleashing their well-received full-length...
Full Bio
Language, The Contortionist
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