30 January 2024

COSMIC SHADOWS – Cosmic Shadows (2023, LP/Cassette Sound Effect Records) 




Label: Sound Effect Records

Format: LP, Album, Limited Edition, Black Vinyl, 200 copies

Format: LP, Album, Limited Edition, Cyan Blue Vinyl, 100 copies

Format: Cassette, Album, Limited Edition, 50 copies

Release Date: 17 Nov 2023

Now here’s an exciting new band coming straight out of the Athenian (Greece) underground, they go by the name Cosmic Shadows, and they move into the garage-psych-rock ground. Cosmic Shadows is a quartet that consists of Jon Mitropoulos (rhythm guitar, vocals, lyrics), Stathis Psychis (drums, percussions), Pavlos Patsonis (lead guitar, backing vocals, percussions), and Vasilis Alexopoulos (bass, backing vocals, piano). Their self-titled debut album “Cosmic Shadows” is released through Greek label Sound Effect Records and let’s have a look at their Bandcamp note, a rather interesting but also enigmatic note:

“It would seem that, after millennia, the insidious songs of sirens are still being raised: Athenians Cosmic Shadows, with their eponymous debut album, weave an inextricable Ariadne’s thread. Intersidereal, kaleidoscopic guitars beckon us into daydreams but collide with fuzz, biting bass, and vocals that are at once stoic, caustic, and plaintive. At the same time, as if plunged into an Escherian diplopia, the journey is juicy, lysergic, and perilous. A game of variations well worth the candle”...

All songs on “Cosmic Shadows” are written by Jon Mitropoulos and Cosmic Shadows, except one cover version. Also, the band states “This is the 1st chapter of Cosmic Shadows” which means that Cosmic Shadows have a plan, a musical plan, it’s not going to be a one-spin-off, so I will be anxiously waiting for their next move. But at the moment let’s focus on their eponymous LP album. “Cosmic Shadows” contains 9 songs in total, 6 on the 1st side and the other 3 on the 2nd side of the LP. It kicks off with “Intro” which is (obviously) a short introduction, an instrumental tune with a sweet Cosmic-Psych guitar sound making you even more curious for the next of the album… Under that specific musical guitar cosmic theme the follower “I Had A Dream” continues, while the band dives even deeper into a Cosmic-Psychedelic universe, colorful, full of energy, and quite melodic, a track that initially flirts with neo-garage but it keeps on evolving and at the end what remains/sticks to my mind is that this particular song perfectly fits with the nowadays New York Garage-Psych-Rock n’ Roll scene, the band that especially comes to mind is the great Mystery Lights…But also, I think that another band that comes to mind is that exceptional band from L.A., The Entrance Band, anyway… “Devil’s Game” is a dynamic track, with maximum power, full of energy, a fantastic Psych-Blues Rock n’ Roller while there’s a strong resemblance between Jon’s voice and Mike Brandon’s (The Mystery Lights’ frontman). And this is not bad at all, I find it quite fascinating though… “Mr. Thomas” starts… and this is a quite funny feeling… You see, I’ve been to the one and only Mystery Lights performance in Athens (19 Feb 2020, at Gagarin) – I was Blown Away, by the way (hehe) – and after a few hours/days/weeks as a “side effect” I kept asking myself “why there aren’t any Greek bands playing like this”… Well, it seems that the answer to that query came to me – like a revelation – while listening to the Cosmic Shadows album… Is there a chance that any of the Cosmic Shadows boys were in that live concert? I’ll have to find out … Anyhow, back to the review… The next one is the only cover version on the album, it’s called “Bo Diddley Was The 7th Son”, originally by The UFO Club (a band related to The Black Angels and Night Beats among others), released on their one-and-only eponymous album in 2012… This is a hot Psych-o-Blues track, of course based on that haunted daemonic Bo Diddley riff! And I have to say that UFO Club’s album is a big influence/inspiration on Cosmic Shadow’s debut album! Side ‘A’ closes with “Satisfy”, a cool rhythmic track, which blends some nowadays West Coast Californian vibes, emerging an exciting neo-garage-y feel… Side ‘B’ opens with “Lopi”, a slow-paced bluesy tune that to my surprise is sung in Greek language! A real shock for me when I heard it for the first time but after a few “hearings” I think I was able to “adjust” myself to that song,  an agonizing blues-rock ballad, full of power, band-togetherness, and the necessary psychness, of course… Under a Psych-effected intro “Try” begins, and transforms into an electric balladesque tune, dark, slow, and full of some Cosmic Psych (whatever that is)… Eventually, the album comes to an end with “I Can’t See”, ending the way it started, back to full power, back to speed, a frenzy fuzzy Psych Rock n’ Roller that after the first couple of minutes the band changes direction making a huge dive into a psychedelic sea of liqueur, creating a hallucinogenic lysergic soundscape, full of acid, hazy but trippy and a bit shoegazey, a cosmically fuzz-a-delic tune, what an ending! Mind-bending for sure! Splendid! So, “Cosmic Shadows” is a fascinating multifunctional ROCK album full of garage-psych-rock n’ roll energy by a most promising Greek band and as I’ve already said, I’m anticipating for Chapter Two… Dig it! (by the way, the album made it to my TOP 50+1 albums of 2023, you can check the list here) TimeLord Michalis   



A1 Intro 1:54
A2 I Had A Dream 5:31
A3 Devil’s Game 2:55
A4 Mr. Thomas 3:22
A5 Bo Diddley Was The 7th Son 3:52
A6 Satisfy 3:06
B1 Lopi 6:25
Β2 Try 5:48
Β3 I Can’t See 7:16






Listen/Buy through COSMIC SHADOWS Bandcamp


Get the album via SOUND EFFECT RECORDS

Alternatively get it through SHINY BEAST Mailorder






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