One thing that is done right on this release is the overall sound. Currents stands a nice mixture of both the digital and metal worlds, akin to the audio quality of mid-career to even some modern Fear Factory creations. The guitars have a little distortion to them to work with the overall sleeker appearance, while the bass guitar is loud enough to play an important role without an obnoxiously deep tuning that pulls your attention squarely to its vibrant twanging. The drums also stand just as crisp, and often with well-timed execution in shifting sounds, such as with the various industrialized effects utilized not only for the sake of a mechanical undertone, but to also keep the four songs aligned in a traditional Progressive Rock/Metal manner.
“The Sun Martyr” eases you in with a rich hum that slowly grows louder with an accompanied drum beat churned out from a machine. The Nine Inch Nails-esque start takes its time to build upon itself, a slow burn that gives way to some catchy, even commanding riffs and drum patterns that are guaranteed to get your head bobbing along to what amounts to an extensive introduction an established band may use at the start of a live performance. “Follow the Blind” kind of starts with a similar tension, though paced a little faster. What begins as more of a mathcore performance treads into Rush influenced Progressive Rock with a looming technological presence in the form of rolling mechanical buzzing and roars. This one isn’t quite as infectious, catering to plenty of musical shifts throughout, but the real prize here is the technicality in the guitars, and how the tighter, faster paced chords work with the haunting post-metal leads that eventually are joined by sharp white noise and the oft voice before the audio sample just past four minutes in.
The noise continues on to bleed into “White Black”, a more melodic piece of aggression that shows traces of djent within the industrialized melodic madness that slams into play almost immediately. Things do eventually slow down, focusing on held notes and simpler catchy hooks in the background, though the amount of melody still brought in isn’t any less infectious. In fact, it seems enhanced by the effect incorporated on the bass, turning those twangs into something that sounds as though it were coming right off your computer’s hard drive or motherboard. All of this acts as a nice transition into the title track, though it doesn’t necessarily bleed into it like the gap between the last two tracks managed to accomplish. Instead, “Currents” kicks off with a trudging doom metal presence with additional electronic elements like ticking and random short bouts of interference. The lead chords, however, grow to paint an eerie and isolated landscape the minimal chugs benefit from quite well. By the half way point, you’ll have encountered an expanding post-metal and even shoegaze touch that grinds to a halt, picking back up with more of a sludge presence that drones on through highly distorted analog noise guaranteed to give you a migraine before throwing some cleaner, creepy chords your way.
Currents isn’t the kind of album you can pick up and select one track or the other and get the same rush you do by sitting through the release from start to finish, even past that initial first time through. While not all songs are intertwined through the gaps between one track to another, Currents explores a number of metal and hardcore-oriented genres to weave an interesting just over thirty minute journey with plenty of emotional impact between the many hooks and catchy grooves scattered about in a way that links them all together in a rough way. It’s an engaging recording that is often fairly accessible to those who aren’t even huge fans of instrumental albums or half the styles it happens to dabble in, and that ends up the only real downfall. A lot of the built tension doesn’t always pay off, as if Mario decided to play it safe on this project, holding back from really letting the creative juices cut loose, which is an urge you can tell he’s fighting back much of the time. However, as a first outing, Currents is still an easy-going and enjoyable debut from Codas, and one fans of progressive or post-metal will get a kick out of.