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Glens Falls, New York, United States | SELF

Glens Falls, New York, United States | SELF
Band Rock Alternative


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"Cosmonauts -The Demise of Daniel Raincourt EP"

It may sound like a contradiction in terms but, with The Demise of Daniel Raincourt, Glens Falls rock sextet Cosmonauts have managed to compress an impressively well-wrought conceptual epic into the EP format. To be exact, Daniel Raincourt is the second part of a saga that began with the band’s debut The Disfiguration of Emily Malone last March and includes a veritable graphic novel of supplementary material in text and illustrations.

The song cycle follows Daniel Raincourt, a desperately heartbroken man, who, after the death of his sister and departure of his wife for his former brother-in-law, begins seeing visions of his former orphan friend Emily Malone, who killed herself years before after a childhood of abuse. To say that the tone of the EP is dire and emotionally harrowing would be a vast understatement. With progressive guitar riffing and melodramatic vocal leads, Cosmonauts push past their metal and emo influences to craft a macabre suburban gothic that yearns for domestic stability while it falls apart one limb at a time.

Produced by Travis Gray at Queensbury’s Echo City Studios, the miniepic spares no production flourishes. The seven-minute “Slow Decay” all but trades in the pop song structure for something more conducive to narrative, not unlike a showtune, actually, while the eight-minute “Heritage Day Parade” rides a few rampaging verses and guitar solos into a dirging bridge and demented music box outro. This and the titular closing track get symphonic treatment in the liner notes, subdivided and -titled into movements for thematic continuity.

Like the best of conceptual rock, it takes close listening and a little bit of guesswork to take the narrative as a cohesive whole, but this lets each track stand independently and allows for more creative sequencing in the live context. Cosmonauts have made themselves familiar to local rock clubs in the past year, but with all of their recorded output focusing on the Raincourt saga, it will be interesting to see if they remain a vehicle for the story as they no doubt earn a larger audience. - Metroland

"Change and the modern music landscape"

The essays in Chuck Klosterman’s Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs come off gleefully: even when discussing sordid or depressing material, there’s an underlying enthusiasm which I have chalked up to “WHOA, I GET PAID TO WRITE THIS!” His second collection of essays, Eating the Dinosaur, contains a larger number of memorable and insightful pieces than the first book, but it’s not as manic in its style. The excitement of the format has worn off, and now the arguments are foremost instead of the style. Eating the Dinosaur is better, but it’s not as much fun as the first one. This is very nearly the same situation that Cosmonauts find themselves in with The Demise of Daniel Raincourt.

The Cosmonauts’ previous EP The Disfiguration of Emily Malone established the central part of a story that the new one starts and finishes. Emily Malone is a hyperactive blast of My Chemical Romance-esque rock, complete with huge riffs and hooky vocal melodies. If it’s the middle of the story, then the whole tale is a crescendo to and decrescendo from the center: Daniel Raincourt is a more calculated, atmospheric take on Cosmonauts’ sound.

The five songs contained in this EP espouse songwriting that gives the instruments a great more breathing room. “The Slow Decay” has a preamble that goes on for 1:28; “Emily’s Surprise” is introduced by a forlorn guitar line and strings. The predominant emotion of the tunes is not adrenalized passion, but brooding.

The songs doesn’t stray too far from the previously established sound, but there’s a definite emotive shift that precludes the “BURYMEBURYMEBURYMEBURYME!” bravado of previous work. Even the upbeat Latin rhythms and sounds of “The Heritage Day Parade” manage to sound ominous (the roared vocals in this particular tune help, of course). This isn’t to say these songs don’t rock; it’s merely that the point of reference is different. These songs sound more like No Devolucion-era Thursday than MCR.

As a full album, the tunes of the previous EP would compliment these to complete a wide, satisfying range of moods. The idea of producing a concept album over three releases (two EPs and a vinyl) is the sort of ambition and forward-thinking that I love to see in bands; a) for even attempting a concept album, and b) for acknowledging the fact that distribution models are changing. This alone is enough to praise.

The songs deserve their props as well, especially the genre-morphing of “The Heritage Day Parade”; the growth in depth to Cosmonauts’ songwriting suggests a dedication to craft. Although I miss some of the ecstatic chord mashing of the previous EP, the change is good. Bands that change survive and thrive, while bands that stay static get tossed aside quicker than ever in this day and age. The Demise of Daniel Raincourt establishes Cosmonauts as a thoughtful, engaged rock band on both the musical and business fronts. - Independent Clauses

"COSMONAUTS “The Demise of Daniel Raincourt” is an epic indie rock treasure; purely infectious"

Glens Falls, NY has been housing an epic indie rock treasure in the form the quintet Cosmonauts. Their upcoming release entitled “The Demise of Daniel Raincourt” (Jan. 14th, 2012) contains five tracks of intricate story-telling ear candy. Ethereal layers of tasteful and coherent instrumentation serve as the stage for massively memorable and dramatic vocal hooks. The dark, cryptic melodies cleverly employ rich dynamic changes and spoken background parts, all of which are sure to have anyone singing along by their second listen. The singer occasionally sounds pleasantly akin to Andrew McMahon of Something Corporate and Jack’s Mannequin. The lyrics lay out chapters to an ongoing character narrative, not unlike Coheed & Cambria that forms another unique characteristic to Cosmonauts’ material.

As if the clever songwriting were not reason enough to check it out, the production is spot on, clear, and adds all around to the bands desired tonal vibe. While only five tracks, “The Demise of Daniel Raincourt” definitely weighs into the full-length bracket, with most tracks over five minutes and the last exceeding nine. From the ominous verses and purely infectious, soaring vocal climaxes of the first track (Daniel’s Letter), to the twisting turns and goose-bump raising movements of the closing/title track, the record has a firmly definitive vibe and feel to it, without sounding at all like a bunch of all-to-similar songs, a plague of many modern bands across the genre lines. These guys pull from a wisely vast span of rock, pop, indie and various stylistic influences to accompany their schooled variety of instrumental additions to the usual guitar/bass/drums; including delicate piano to head turning flamenco guitar riffs. Several sudden time and feel changes within some songs almost throw the listener off briefly, but are precisely executed and impressive.

Listening to the record from front to back yields a very smooth and complete listening experience, as each unique movement seems to flow into the next. This band without a doubt is a threat on all plains, from diverse and tasteful musicianship to powerhouse vocals and song-crafting prowess, and will certainly be making a stir anywhere they bring this music. The band has put out a steady flow of material in their brief career so far, and has already independently moved well over 1,000 copies of their debut E.P. They also have a 7’’ out on Kentucky based Little Heart Records. Watch out for these space age rock contenders, Cosmonauts doesn’t seem to be leaving orbit any time soon.

For more on the Cosmonauts -

-Chris Parmelee -

"Cosmonauts’ theatrical rock is ready for the big time"

With an EP named “The Disfiguration of Emily Malone” and tunes named “The Rapist of Hemingway Home,” “The Funeral of Allison J. Sherman,” and “The Lovers of Kerosene Lane,” you’d be forgiven if you think at first glance that Cosmonauts is some sort of brutal metal band. Instead, the band creates radio-perfect rock’n'roll that draws on the history of pop music and shares ideas with My Chemical Romance.

First things first: I really enjoy My Chemical Romance, so that’s praise in the previous paragraph. MCR does a great job of creating breakneck tunes that straddle the line between theatrical and over-the-top while crafting immediately memorable melodies. While Cosmonauts may have some room to grow in the “immediate melodies” category, everything else lines up neatly.

The four songs here are 25 minutes long, and the shortest of them is 4:51. The band has no censor, and that’s mostly for the better. Opener “The Rapist of Hemingway Home” is a distorted doo-wop tune, complete with soaring French horn in the non-chord-mashing parts. The title track is an AFI-esque soaring rocker, which fits them quite well.

But it’s in “The Lovers of Kerosene Lane” that the band excels. The nine-minute track has the most gripping melody of the batch, a motif that is repeated with multiple phrases (“Kerosene,” “Loving me,” “Burning me,” etc.). You will have it stuck in your head, don’t worry. It starts off with a punked-out MCR rager, but then drops into a piano waltz before jumping off to other things. Yes, the band has MCR’s love for unusual genres as well.

Cosmonauts’ vocals are high, but not boyishly high. The vocalist strikes a neat analogue to Gerard Way; the tenor tone is not quite as fervent, but tones of condescension and desperation are easily noted as similar.

These songs have a lot of stuff packed into them, and while Cosmonauts does stretch its chaos out over larger palettes than MCR (who usually pack their insanity into four minute chunks), there’s still enough whipsaw changes to make any fan of theatrical rock grin. If Cosmonauts could trim their song lengths a bit, they’d be a shoo-in on radio. This band is ready for the big time. - Independent Clauses


COLD HARBOR Single Released 8.21.12

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COSMONAUTS is a band that has quickly gained local and regional notoriety for their lurid storytelling through unrestrained emotion, complex lyricism, and their use of innovative song structures. Not only do their lyrics paint macabre pictures, but their instrumentation captures you like the threading of a needle, weaving its way into a wall of sound. With the group's upcoming release, "THE DEMISE OF DANIEL RAINCOURT," their already enigmatic sound becomes a genre all its own.
Cosmonauts is comprised of Joe Mansman, Bill Hunsinger, Jake Lavin, Sheldon Reeves, and Garrett Bean

Their musical catalogue tells the interlacing stories of Daniel Raincourt and Emily Malone, former orphans from the same boarding house. Their childhood friendship becomes separated when Daniel gets adopted by a caring family and Emily is left to grow up alone and loved only by her Psychiatrist who rapes her until she commits suicide during her teen years. As time goes by, Emily fades from Daniel's memories.

Daniel, now a timid husband, is struggling to accept a separation from his adulterous wife Ashley. Her illicit lover is Daniel's brother-in-law, husband to his sister Allison. When Allison leaves William, she seeks comfort in her brother's arms but on her way to Daniel she dies in a horrible car accident. Blaming himself, Daniel slips into a downward spiral. In his manic depressive state Emily's memory manifests herself to him triggering a catastrophic series of events and giving Daniel a second chance to make everything right.