Few bands convincingly cross genres within a career as deftly as Cynic does within a single song. These virtuosic purveyors of progressive metal from Miami are a prime example of musical ambition and the typically tumultuous response that follows revolution; critics hailed their genre-bending 1993 debut Focus as visionary, yet a supporting tour with Cannibal Corpse brought sometimes show-stopping jeers from the latter's unsuspecting fans. After fifteen years of briefly performing in the bands Portal and Æon Spoke and collaborating with rock legends in Gordian Knot, the members of Cynic return with their sophomore gem, Traced in Air, another landmark venture into uncharted territory and one critically acclaimed as free of categorization. Metal purists will find ample pummeling, technical virtuosity and growling met by phrenic interweavings of time, texture and melody. Let's hope Cynic's audience of Meshuggah fans is comparatively less, ahem, cynical than previous crowds.