James Fogarty has a bit of a dilemma on his hands. Having dismantled his solo project Ewigkeit some ten years ago, coupled with a rant about metal being conservative and out of touch, how on earth is he going to resurrect the project and make it relevant? Having had a few other endeavors on the go over the past ten years, including the electronic/metal Bombs of Enduring Freedom, the comical Jaldaboath, and a hand in the last In the Woods effort, the man has proven himself an adept singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist, but overcoming his Ewigkeit-ending statements will take a certain amount of chutzpah. Let’s see if he’s got it.

Cosmic Man, Ewigkeit’s sixth release, starts off in the worst possible way: with a meaningless two-minute instrumental, “Quantum Eraser.” It’s one of my two pet peeve errors Fogarty commits on Cosmic Man. After a few obligatory listens, I prefer to skip it and get right to the meat of the music, which comes in the form of the extreme metal “Cold Souls.” With Ewigkeit having taken root in black metal way back in the 90s, “Cold Souls” should come as no surprise, but does leave me wondering what the point is. It’s a great-sounding song, blasting away with furious vocals, but why bring a band back from the dead to rehash old sounds? A closer listen reveals the truth, as a minute in Fogarty switches to his clean vocals, which are very much like Hammers of Misfortune’s Joe Hutton, and we’re into a more traditional NWOBHM feel. The extreme vocals come and go, as does the blasting, but it turns out they’re a well-used effect rather than a crutch, and despite clocking in at a lengthy seven minutes, “Quantum Eraser” is a solid start, but turns out to be a bit of a red herring as the extreme vocals disappear the rest of the way.

“Death is the Portal” is another long song – hell, they’re all long – and for much of Cosmic Man it does sound remarkably similar to Hammers of Misfortune, with maybe a touch of Torche stylings thrown in. Fogarty sings and plays all the instruments, and excels the most on his Hammond organ, which brings some 70s stylings to the record. Overall the feel of Cosmic Man is a mashup of 70s Deep Purple hard rock, 80s NWOBHM, and a lot of psychedelia. The combination is engaging, and despite the songs averaging over six minutes apiece, they’re well written such that we generally don’t want to skip ahead out of boredom. I love “Neon Ghoul Ride,” with its fuzzed-out Leslie cabinet blaring organ notes throughout to heavy chugging riffs and spaced-out vocals, and the instrumental “Space Horse” kicks ass in a way not a lot of instrumentals do.

I mentioned two pet peeves of mine that Fogarty commits here, the first being an annoying intro song. The second is the use of Native American whooping in the weak “Thief in the Sky,” a song that could have easily been left on the cutting room floor. Even if the song is about white man’s atrocities in the settlement of North America, the chants in the opening and the bridge are gratuitous. Another song I have mixed feelings about is the album closer, a cover of Iron Maiden’s “Two Minutes to Midnight.” I love Maiden, and the cover is refreshing, with an organ solo being a cool feature, but Fogarty can’t sing the song. I have a love/hate feeling for the result – but I do keep listening to it.

These nitpicks are more than offset by excellent production and musicianship, and overall stellar songwriting. I found myself coming back to Cosmic Man even when I was supposed to be listening to other review promos, which is a good sign. The more I listened to it, the closer it came to a 3.5, but it just couldn’t quite get there. Nevertheless, a great comeback record for Ewigkeit. Fogarty has done well: Cosmic Man is certainly relevant.


Rating: 3.0/5.0
DR: 8 | Format Reviewed: 320 kbps mp3
Label: Svart Records
Websites: ewigkeit.bandcamp.com | facebook.com/ewigkeitofficial/
Releases Worldwide: July 14th, 2017

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  • The music is really good and the cover looks like he’s going down a water slide at Noah’s Ark. I will have to add to to the list.

    • Nag Dammit

      Theme park metal. There’s a one album sub-genre right there.

      • But it’d be a damn good sub-genre!

      • Ironwood_Druid

        Pretty sure Nightwish might have hit this already with Imaginaerum…

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra
  • welyyt

    The only thing worse than intro tracks are instrumental interludes.

    • Nukenado

      Sometimes those things can work.
      affinity.exe isn’t a really bad intro, and Hand. Cannot. Erase has a great instrumental interlude.

      Now a proper track serving more as an interlude… That’s a problem.
      Offernatt from Kvlertak’s self-titled debut was a killer song, but could not be listened to on repeat due to containing the intro to Sjøhyenar (Havets Herrer).

      • Nag Dammit

        Who needs an interlude in an album? We’re not listening to it in a theatre. No one’s bringing me fucking ice cream. If it isn’t a full track, get rid of it. Or at least flesh it out to something more worthwhile so I can skip it.

        • Nukenado

          Well… I can’t say much aside from “it’s your opinion”. Most interludes I’ve heard are longer intros to other tracks, seperated for easy skipping, so I’d say they also serve the purpose of intros.

          But I guess if you don’t like intro tracks, you won’t like interludes (shrug)

          • Nag Dammit

            You raise some interesting points and I was just having some fun and being inflammatory. Of course there are some decent examples of interludes. I’m most partial to those of an acoustic nature. There are a couple on CoC’s Deliverance and ‘The Vermillion’ on Excydsis by Horrendous is another. Plus Obsequiae go all out on Aria of Vernal Tombs, all of which work for me. It’s when bands think I want to listen to a 2 minute intro track of Gregorian chanting recorded in a toilet at the end, or (more annoyingly) at the start of a proper track that gets my goat.

            So yeah, I guess I like (some) interludes but hate pointless intros.

          • Nukenado

            “Gregorian chanting recorded in a toilet at the end”
            Those kinds really need to die. I think it’s for “atmosphere”, but those just kill the flow.

        • [not a Dr]

          I wish someone would bring me ice cream whenever I listen to an album…

        • Felchmeister777

          Daft comment. If the ‘interlude’ is musical then it may just have a place on the album. You know, part of the ‘story’ as it were…

          That’s not to say loads of them aren’t a waste of time and/or pointless. But you begrudging the very concept is really a little idiotic I’m afraid…

    • Planex

      I love both!

    • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

      The ONLY fault I ever found on Bolt Thrower’s “Warmaster” is that bullshit noise intro about 1 minute long integrated into the first track, so there’s no way to skip it, you have to suffer through it.

    • Felchmeister777

      Tell that to ‘Desolate Ways’ off Morbid Angel’s Blessed are the Sick…

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    I was about to dismiss listening t the embeddad track based on the “metal being conservative and out of touch” bit of bullshit talking, but then I read about Hammond organ being used on the record, so I had to cave in and listen to it… And I don’t regret it.

    • Nukenado

      Same. Even more with the Hammers of Misfortune namedrops.
      Hammond organs are the best keyboard noises!

      • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

        Let’s face it, after the development of Hammond organs, most of the work done on keyboard technology has been about emulating Hammonds…

        • Nukenado

          Unless it’s power metal.

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            You like Power Metal? You like Hammonds? How about Power Metal AND Hammonds? Boy, do I have a song for you… Check out “Blood of Bannockburn” by Sabaton.

          • Nukenado

            …Now I know why my non-metal friend can’t shut up about Sabaton.

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            Well, go listen to the whole of “Heroes” and make sure you read the lyrics and read the Wikipedia article about the album so you know the History behind every song’s lyrics. You won’t be able to shut up about Sabaton either.

          • Nukenado

            Hah, that I know. Sabaton’s lyrical themes are actually the put-down for me. I appreciate the efforts the band puts in creating those lyrics, but I’m not a big fan of war metal.
            I just never knew the music kicks this much ass though.

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            Trust me on this one, give “Heroes” a try… read the lyrics, read the History behind the stories.

          • Nukenado


            Well, shit. Guess that’s another band I have to throw money at.

    • Nag Dammit

      I don’t believe you. It was the alluring motor bike shot that did it surely? Just me?

      • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

        I only saw the motorcycle on my way down to the embedded track after reading “Hammond organ”… I’m more attracted to Hammonds than to motorbikes, believe it or not.

    • Thatguy

      Yeah, I like the organ too, but otherwise the comment you were going to make is the comment I was going to make and it is the comment that needs making.

      Consider it made.

      • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

        You mean the bit about bullshit talking?

        • Thatguy

          I meant that this music is conservative and out of touch.

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            And that’s what he was complaining about!

      • Carlos Marrickvillian

        The embedded clip also doubles as a useful instructional video for young players on why lyric videos are a bad idea.

  • If this is “British Metal” then why this dude call his band eternity in German?

    It’s actually a fun word to say if you pronounce it correctly. Death is the Portal sounds good enough that I may check out the whole album.

    • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

      Dudes in Britain are allowed to call their bands whatever they want… Go figure.

  • Carlos Marrickvillian

    I fwyestrc this album.

    • Drew Music

      I have been staring at that puke-bucket of letters for the entirety of smoking a cigarette and still have no idea if ‘fwyestrc’ is a good or bad thing. I’ve been through various acronym theories, tried to chart out potential spellcheck fails, researched various cultural curses, asked the bugs outside, prayed, and I’ve come up with nothing.
      Reveal your wordly secrets unto me, good Carlos, that I may know the meaning of fwyestrc and cease my senseless prattling.

      • [not a Dr]

        A good thing or a bad thing? You need to learn to think and work in the abstract: for all we know, fwyestrc may not even have a position on the good-bad axis.

        • Drew Music

          You’re not my supervisor! I will act and think in as linear and limited a manner as I see fit.
          I AREN’T THINK MORE!

      • Carlos Marrickvillian

        haha it’s an ancient cvlt language that is only to be deployed when discussing biker rock albums… OMG I’ve said too much!

  • Felchmeister777

    No mention of the fact he wrote and performed most of The Meads of Asphodel’s first two albums..?

    Arguably the highlight of his career. Certainly in my opinion…