Cosmosis, Zenxienz’s second album in as many months, is coming out tomorrow, November 17. Your EDM and the bass music community at large have been paying close attention to the LA-based producer since his last album Brainforest began to see his generally experimental style take on a more EDM bend. He has especially been leaning towards drum and bass in the beat structure of many of his songs, and in Cosmosis almost every single track has some form of dnb beat in it.
One of the most interestingly composed tracks on Cosmosis is “Sapiens,” so it only made sense to premiere it right before the album drops. This track actually has a number of beat structures running through it; it begins with amen-heavy drum and bass then switches to halftime for about a minute before ramping up and going back to a form of dnb that was popular in the late ’90s. It plays as a backwards drum and bass structure in that the syncopation of the beat is on the opposite beats as normal dnb. The drum track then has a break before a jazzy interlude of trip hop, then closes with the original snare-fueled dnb once more.
Synth-wise, per usual Zenxienz is all over the board with “Sapiens.” He’s definitely still keeping his Dadaist experimental ways here, with lots of seemingly random synth sounds blending around and over the beat, but never touching it. In fact in this track one can almost see the drums and synths as completely separate lines of music, rather than the beat grounding the synth in any real way. That’s not a criticism, by the way; it’s a very unique way to have a track move, and it definitely works in the case of “Sapiens.”
Despite all the beat switches and heavily experimental music, it’s clear that this track was composed like an EDM track. It has definite breaks and drops, and the sections of the track have transitions which would work just fine on a dancefloor. With Zenxienz by his own admission taking inspiration from dnb acts like Noisia and Ivy Lab and with an outro that quite clearly models after these bass music titans, it may be only a matter of time before he goes fully into dnb or halftime. The rest of the tracks on Cosmosis just reinforce that.
Cosmosis releases on November 17 and can be purchased on Zenxienz’s Bandcamp page, where two other tracks are also currently available to stream: “Flutter” and “Elysium.” Also check out his trippy new video for “Elysium” below.