Cognizance’s Chris Binns: 5 Surprising Songs I Love

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After seven years of cutting their teeth and paying their dues, U.K. technical death band Cognizance are preparing to release their debut full-length, titled Malignant Dominion, due September 6th via Prosthetic Records. The album is studded with guest assists from a who’s who of extreme metal, including Job for a Cowboy’s Jonny Davy,  the Faceless’ Derek Rydquist, Extol’s Ole Børud and more.

But none of this means that the band members only listen to underground brutality. To the contrary, bassist Chris Binns is a fan of all sorts of wide-ranging music, to the point that when we asked him to share some songs he loves that might surprise people, he responded thusly: “Well, this wouldn’t surprise anyone I know, and I guess most people reading are as eclectic in their taste, but to name something that’s polarizing to Cognizance’s sound, I’d say …”

Usher – “you make me wanna”

I was 12 when this came out and it was probably one of the first singles I bought. I was obsessed with dancing — on my own, in the mirror — and I wanted to be him. [Laughs]

The Weeknd – “Kiss Land”

My girlfriend got me in to The Weeknd when Trilogy came out and I’ve been obsessed since. I love everything from the guy, but this album in particular. It stands out from the rest and, in my opinion, it’s Abel [Makkonen Tesfaye, a.k.a the Weeknd] completely in his element. It’s so prog for its genre. I can put this on the headphones and zone out.

Bad Rabbits – “Dance Moves”

The whole American Love album, but this song in particular gets me ready for a boozy night.

Kate Bush – “Breathing”

Kate Bush is awesome — we all know it — but the lyrical content in this song is ace. Proper storytelling about an unborn baby in the womb that is feeling the effects of nuclear fallout. It’s out there, and I love it.

Gold Key – “Hello, Phantom”

I’m a bit biased here as they’re my mates, but this album is awesome. It’s just great songwriting and completely different to anything the guys have done in their previous bands.