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4.29 | 15 ratings | 4 reviews
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Album · 2008


1. Primordial Soup (01:26)
2. The Literal Black Cloud (05:29)
3. Cavernous Den of Shame (04:12)
4. Prehistoricisms (06:29)
5. Any Port (07:31)
6. Sundial (07:33)
7. Australopithecus (04:32)
8. The Reptilian Brain (16:20)

Total Time 53:32


- Sacha Dunable / guitar, vocals
- Danny Walker / drums
- Joe Lester / electric bass guitar, acoustic upright bass
- David Timnick / guitar, vocals, tabla, additional percussion

About this release

CD and 12" white vinyl 2LP released 11th November 2008 on Century Media (8513), 2LP limited to 1000 copies.

12" 180 gram 2LP released 26th January 2018 on Backbite Records (BBR-050), limited to 100 copies on transparent blue vinyl and 400 copies on black vinyl.

Recorded at Opera Studios, Castle Oaks Studios, Clear Lake Audio and NRG Studios in Los Angeles, CA between May and June of 2008.
Mastered at Super 8 Studios.

Steeve's guitar solo on Sundial recorded at Studio En-Phase, Montreal, QC.

Thanks to NecronCommander, Bosh66 for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

siLLy puPPy
After a debut album and two EPs under their belt the members of INTRONAUT were only getting warmed up it seems. Another member change with Dave Timnick taking over guitar duties after the departure of Leon del Muerte seems to have been the necessary ingredient to grant INTRONAUT that magical prestidigitation to whip up and unleash their absolute wildest and most experimental album of their career. PREHISTORICISMS continues their reputation as an intellectual extreme metal band that seamlessly blends together elements of post-rock, psychedelia and crushing sludge metal brutality all laid out in the most satisfying of musical deliveries of the ages. This is the album that even made the critics go gaga and publications such as Decibel, Metal Maniacs, Outburn, Revolver and so on praised INTRONAUT as the next best thing and after hearing this musical masterpiece it isn’t too overly difficult to understand why.

The band goes about their usual business as before intermingling placid post-rock segments that once the listener is lured into a state of hypnotic bliss is sonically assaulted with catchy brutal riffs that sustain long enough to establish their dominance only to have the false sense of security shattered by unpredictable time signature changes that wend and wind the compositions through highly progressive head bangin' territory. While all the members are brilliant on their respective instruments, it’s worthy of mentioning the above and beyond the call of duty of fretless bass player Joe Lester who infuses the sound with the technical jazz fusion aspects. Equally vital to the new technical achievements is former Jane’s Addiction engineer Josh Newell, who blends together the seamless transitions between the soft and silky contemplative parts and the hardcore brutality by smoothing out any potential awkwardness between the contradictory styles on display.

While PREHISTORICISMS is undeniably the sound of INTRONAUT, the band went for broke and evolved every aspect of their sound to the next level. The compositions have been crafted carefully as to retain their signature sludge bombast all wrapped up with creative uses of slide guitar, fretless bass, highly technical drumming and ambient jazz-infused soundscapes. Timnick’s riffing style is top notch with its fuzzed fury graciously fusing with Sacha Dunable's aggressively screamed vocals with an emphasis on lyrical intellectualisms and concepts of the most primitive and atavistic aspects of the human experience. As mentioned, what really sets this release apart from its predecessors isn’t the excellent musicianship that is present on all of their material but rather the infusion of the jangly post-rock and jazz-infused technicalities. While throughout the majority of the album we are treated to brutal jarring dissonant orotundity, on the final track “The Reptilian Brain (Sleep, Eat, Shit, Fight, Fuck)” we are treated to a five part suite that begins like an Indian raga with sitars and tribal drums and slowly evolves into a 16 minute plus progressive behemoth that develops into a sludge metal monster that satisfies on all musical levels.

Not only is this my favorite INTRONAUT album but this is one of my favorite albums of all time. This is not only a desert isle pick but one that takes many of my disparate musical interests and throws them all together. The success lies not in the fact that these elements are all included but rather in how well crafted their inclusions are and how meticulously placed together in a logical sequence they exist while still finding improvisational space to deliver jarring surprises when least expected. The heavy down-tuned guitars and fretless bass work together in harmony while the percussion takes the listener on an exotic counter-journey. The rhythms, tones, timbres and tempos are all sorted out in a way as to allow the psychedelic and the sludge to not only coexist but to play together and dance the night away. This is highly recommended for anyone who craves mass quantities of intelligent design stamped upon every musical measure and imbued with exemplary musical maestrohood.
Whereas most post-metal bands look to the textures of bands such as Godspeed You Black Emperor or Mogwai for the post-rock side of their sound, Intronaut on Prehistoricism look more to jazzier and more complex groups such as Tortoise or the more math rock-inclined post-rock groups. This is a true asset, because it allows them to craft near-seamless transitions between these sections and the crushing jazz-influenced technical death metal that forms the other half of the whole. Overall, the album widens the horizons of both the post-metal and technical death metal genres and captures the band in very form indeed, and I'd recommend it to anyone interested in progressive or technically complex metal.
It has taken a while to absorb the dense sound of this band. Intronaut sits vocally close to Neurosis, a band that I deeply admire but find hard to get into as well. As usual, it helped to let the album rest for a while and to give it another spin a few months later.

The music is truly unique, an eclectic blend of stoner doom, post metal, jazz progressions and constantly varying tempos and time signatures. Especially the fretless bass and drums are highly captivating and should please all fans of fusion. The rest needs time: the guitars wade through dense chromatic chords and the vocals won't be your preferred option for a romantic night. They are the only element in the music that could be tagged slightly 'extreme' although they are not aggressive, rather heavy, morose and nihilistic. They might be off-putting to sensitive ears but they are not obtrusive and used sparingly.

The nature of the music is rarely violent though, it’s heavy yes, but it’s mainly experimental and, if that matters to you, it’s truly progressive. Yes you can rest assured; the songs aren’t a typical succession of metal riffs. In fact, there are hardly any metal riffs at all, it’s a developing stream of themes, repeated in different tonalities, in constant flux and - well yes – progressing. In fact, there is very little here that you could call metal, especially given how organically this music sounds and flows, which isn’t really a feature of metal. Name it heavy fusion if you like.

It would be hard, but also unnecessary to pick out highlights. This is an album to experience in one sitting. If the vocals put you off, you can have a try at the 16 minute instrumental closing track. It starts with a 5-minute kraut exploration, goes into fusion and culminates with a very dissonant take on Tool and modern King Crimson. So it sums up what these guys are up to in one strong piece. Other songs like Prehistoricisms reveal some Bauhaus and Sonic Youth flavours in the guitar playing next to the prominent Voivod influences.

For once I’m not surprised at the raving reception this album got. This is original and highly challenging music that defies any categorization and deserves 5 stars easily.
Phonebook Eater

Dinosaur Metal: "Prehistoricisms" is an excellent sophomore for Intronaut.

Intronaut is an American metal band,and this is their sophomore released in 2008,"Prehistoricisms", the follow up to the debut "Void", in 2006. There's isn't much background info of the band besides the debut, so they came pretty much out of nowhere in 2008, and received plenty of acclaim, to the point where many considered "Prehistoricisms" to be the best album of the year. Even though I do find that a bit exaggerated, I really enjoyed it.

When I think of Intronaut's music and this album in particular, I tend to imagine it as dinosaur metal. Seriously though, this music has a lot of Prehistoricisms indeed, enough at least to make me think about such a genre. The music is very rough, the guitars are crunchy, but the rhythm section is the most interesting element; the drums are very tom-focused, almost tribal, the bass extremely virtuous. They have many parts where the two are the main attraction, and the guitar simply accompanies. This is not something new, but how Intronaut does it, there's nobody quite like them. The vocals are always in a metalcore friendly growl, and never are clean, which gives the sound a much more intense feel to it. So Intronaut is an extremely technical band, that happens to love having fossils and primordial beings in their lyrics.

The album is pretty solid, but it has a pretty strong and noticeable progression and climax to it: while the first few songs (actually the best in my opinion) are the shortest and more straight-forward, the songs after, beginning with the title track, get more and more progressive; the songs get longer, the music gets even more technical,with a lot of stop and goes too. The progressiveness reaches its peak with the final track, a song that always amazes me, "The Reptilian Brain", sixteen minutes of epic building, from a sitar-bongo section, it slowly evolves into a fierce piece that takes form only at the end of the track.

"Prehistoricisms" is an excellent album for Intronaut, a band that shows incredible promise, and very possibly will release something greater than this. I recommend it to whoever is into prog metal, but the buildings and stop and goes makes me believe that even the most die-hard prog rock fan will enjoy this.

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