Cynic Tease Remix of Acclaimed Debut Album 'Focus'

The 1993 LP is regarded as a landmark prog metal release

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Aug 3, 2022

September 2023 will mark the 30th anniversary of Cynic's debut album Focus, and the American progressive outfit seem to be stoking hype for the milestone early by teasing a newly remixed version of the LP.

Earlier this week (July 31), founding member Paul Masvidal shared on Facebook that Focus had been "officially remixed" by Warren Riker, the engineer and mixer who previously co-produced Cynic's acclaimed 2008 follow-up Traced in Air.

Thanking him for his "tireless commitment," Masvidal shared of Riker, "Warren always shows up completely and delivers like no one else," adding that a release date for the remixed Focus is "TBD." Earlier this month, Masvidal shared a short video on Twitter of Riker at work on the remix in-studio.

Masvidal also thanked original Focus co-producer, mixer and engineer Scott Burns for his work "[capturing] the moments that paved the foundation for us to take this journey." You can find his post below.

Riker also has production and mixing credits on Cynic's 2021 album Acension Codes, and also worked with the band on 2010's Traced in Air companion EP Re-traced. Additionally, he has lent his expertise to Masvidal's solo material and to Cynic offshoot Æon Spoke.

Riker has also worked with artists including Cathedral, Down, Mnemic, Santana, Fugees and many more. Perhaps most famously, he appears in the credits of Lauryn Hill's celebrated solo debut The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, notably recording smash single "Doo Wop (That Thing)."

Since its initial 1993 release, Focus has come to be viewed as a landmark release in the progressive metal subgenre, its influence heard in the music of similar-minded outfits including Meshuggah, Between the Buried and Me and Spiral Architect. Chicago -core crew Veil of Maya also share a name with the album's opening track.

A remastered version of Focus was previously released by Roadrunner Records in 2004, which also saw three album tracks — "Veil of Maya," "I'm But a Wave To...," and "How Could I" — given the remix treatment by John Hiler.

Cynic also treated Traced in Air to a Remixed and remastered version in 2019, which also omitted the entirety of the original recording's harsh vocal parts.

Longtime Cynic bassist Sean Malone, who played bass and Chapman Stick on Focus, passed away in 2020 at age 50.

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