Where to begin… I only recently discovered the band Gojira, and loved what I heard. I went back to check out some of their more extreme and avant-garde earlier stuff and wasn’t overly impressed personally, and then L’Enfant Sauvage came out of nowhere and stole my heart. To me only a third of this album really captivates me and I still think it deserves a handful of awards (looking at you metal album of the year). This French metal band was formed in 1996 under Godzilla, but didn’t popularize until approximately 10 years ago. Joe Duplantier rocks these unique vocals while pumping out the rhythm guitar, and his brother rides the drums, with addition to their close friends Christian Andreu on guitar and Jean-Michel Labadie on bass. These 5 have been and hopefully will always be Gojira; with not a single change of lineup. ever.
I’ve got to get my favourite song on this album (and honestly my favorite song right now) out of the way good and quick or I’ll rant. Within a few weeks Born In Winter skyrocketed to my most played song on iTunes, and by that time I was strapping people to chairs and forcing them to experience their first eargasm. The slow, yet almost eager opening rift, with dueling guitars and a reliable beat instantly become stapled to your memory as the mesmerizing vocals sooth and calm the soul, yet something is subtly building… but what? Suddenly Mario the drummer gets mad, and when he gets mad, he gets heavy. Somehow the sounds intensity and aggression is increased tenfold whiles still containing the calming eagerness of the original rift. As the aggression dies down you’re left with nothing but that same rift, almost haunting you before an abrupt close. This song gets me every damn time; youtube it, and if you aren’t sold then you hate art.
While the majority of songs on the album has the new feel of smooth technical/progressive death metal (often with groovy influences), there are a couple of songs on this album that have Gojira once again playing with sounds and musicnessness. The song Planned Obsolescence has somewhat of an industrial influence to it, rather than a groovy feel; as well as a strange 56 second silent end. I’m… not entirely sure why, but being in the middle of the album one could make the possible assumption that it splits the album up. The other bizarre song, Pain Is A Master, is not unlike some of their old semi-ambient tracks overflowing with unsettling sounds. Just over a minute in it bursts back into some heavy metal classic feels that seem to come from nowhere. The influences being completely unknown as it isn’t half as groovy as some of the tracks on the album, yet it’s one of the most progressive. Quite interesting if nothing else, and I’m still not sure if I actually like it or not… odd…
On a much cheerier note, the last song on the album, and the album song itself, L’Enfant Sauvage is just an absolutely fantastic song. This is what Gojira was made for: with the perfect combination of progressive, technical, death and groove. Gift Of Guilt is just the tits, and every damn time I listen to it, I get into it more and more. Progressive Groove Death Metal? I’ll take two. Last song I would like to make mention of is Liquid Fire. To me this is that slice of baloney that slides in between the songs L’Enfant Sauvage and Born In Winter. It’s the best of both worlds stewing in a pot of ‘yes’-ness. You may or may not catch yourself singing a line or six, because maybe it’s just me but sweet Jesus this song is catchy.
This album is all-in-all simply amaze-tits. Not much more to be said.
Have a swell day.
In the name that all is good.
I am Roxburgh.