Chaos Theory deals with complex systems whose behaviour is highly sensitive to slight changes in condition, and as a result a small alteration can give rise to monumental changes. It’s a theory that in a way can be tied in with the earliest moments of London quintet Cosines, a chance meeting on the London Underground between singer Alice Hubley and multi-instrumentalist Simon Nelson, led naturally to Simon appearing at Alice’s house, unblocking drains, putting up curtain rails and as usually follows DIY, forming a band.
Cosines will this week release a new EP, Transitions, their first new music since their 2014 debut, Oscillations. It serves as a bridge between that record and an as yet untitled follow up, which should be with us next year. Today we’re delighted to be premiering one of the four tracks that make up that EP, Chaos Theory.
The EP’s closing track, Chaos Theory is also arguably the Cosines’s most progressive moment to date. In many ways it eschews the indie-pop leanings of the band’s previous output in favour of something which is conceivably more challenging, but unquestionably more rewarding. Starting off as a minimal synth-pop track, it’s a perfect example of the thrill of a gentle musical build; without ever seeming to lurch it builds a sonic wall of rolling toms, duelling saxophones and hypnotic synthesizers, a quiet, almost subtle cacophony if such a thing can possibly exist. As it fades out on a pulsating, twitching synth, pop fans could be forgiven for feeling a long way from home.
A band named after a trigonometric function singing a song named after a branch of mathematical study; if we’re honest the slightly geeky side of us was always going to give the new Cosines single a listen. Thankfully it lived up to its wonderfully studious promise, and marks Transitions out not as a stop-gap but a pathway to a bright and exciting next phase.