Friday, July 31, 2009

Gojira - The Way Of All Flesh

When ever i mention a metal band to anyone,they instantly try to compare and contrast it to other artists in order to come up with a likeness. However, every once and awhile, an artist peaks up from the netherworld to blow established traditions out of the water.With The Way of All Flesh Gojira have established its stranglehold on the extreme metal spectrum with a linguist s touch, a lyricist s finesse, and a crushingly heavy live show that left audiences astounded, establishing the band s live performance as a spot-on recreation of the band s increasingly adept and intelligent studio output.

Gojira's sound blends death, progressive and thrash metal, and they add a few industrial parts on this CD as well. Some tracks are dense and technical, with waves of riffs and pummeling blast beats that are brutal and intense.

Other songs leave a little more room to breathe, with mellower progressive sections and groovier riffs. The Way Of All Flesh has a lot of diversity in tempos, textures, intensities and song lengths that help keep the listener fully engaged at all times.

The most noticeable change is the production’s shift from razor-like to a more organic, natural sound except when it comes to Joe Duplantier’s vocals. As tight as ever, Gojira’s ‘Oroborus’ is a welcome, if downtrodden, beginning but it’s the intricacies of ‘Toxic Garbage Island’ that pique interest until the thunderous riffs come in at 0:52. Right off the bat with the excellent the riffs come heavy and pressing. They're repeated in a way that you'll remember them, but never be annoyed by the same riff going on and on, or think that they band simply doesn't know how to write a change in chord. Many of the songs experience at least one major change during the course of a song, and this is especially present in the standout Orobous .This carries on throughout the album, and like albums by the band to come before it, the first thing that you'll probably identify with with the album on the third or fourth listen is going to be the use of the riffs.

The near electronic introduction A Sight To Behold features some very impressive drumming and eventually turns into more heavy metal madness. Likely the best song on the album is the lengthiest.Adoration For None has guest vocals from Lamb Of God’s Randy Blythe. I believe he fits into the mold here, but the first half of the song is a little too busy for my liking, yet it’s not a detractor, either. The Art Of Dying is absolutely magnificent. It goes through the epic song structure with ease in it's 10-minute duration from the purely percussion introduction until the time when the guitars explode into motion. Highly impressive riffs throughout change and reprise over one another turning this track into a progressive megalodon which is sure to impress anyone who has the chance to hear it.

And for those out there who actually care about messages, the band seems to be quite the green advocate. With songs on From Mars To Sirius like Global Warming it was pretty obvious that the band was not afraid to voice their opinion on the subject, but apparently they want to do so even more on this album. Take for example the lyrics on... well, just about any song. A Sight To Behold talks about the ''exhausted realm of nature'' - but the lyrics are not really intrusive, and while some of the more ''metal'' metal heads may not think that it's ''metal'' to talk about nature in your music it's just one more kudos towards Gojira for putting a worthwhile message in their music.

With a fresh batch of brutal songs, Gojira has put together a very strong fourth release, and in my opinion their best to date (inches out From Mars to Sirius by a nose). While staying in-character and using slow triplets and grinding guitar sections, they have added a few small dimensions to the mix that only help make the listener appreciate the things that make up what Gojira are known for. Where the band goes from here in unknown to me, but I can almost say for certain that it will be good.

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