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Gojira: The Way of All Flesh

Always a great band with a unique sound, France's Gojira finally return with a follow-up to the outstanding From Mars to Sirius, the equally dramatic and challenging The Way of All Flesh. Upon initial listen here, it's obvious that the band's many treks out on the live circuit with acts such as Behemoth, Lamb of God, Children of Bodom, and others has greatly done them wonders-the songwriting and playing here on The Way of All Flesh is even more experimental, often times heavier, than prior material, and there's a slight industrial element that creeps into their brand of progressive death metal on a couple of songs. Lead vocalist/guitar player Joseph Duplantier has an instantly recognizable voice, lead off track "Oroborus" a great vehicle for his melodiuc death metal vocals, which rage over a bed of crushing riffs from he and Christian Andreu. "Toxic Garbage Island" is a complex, twisting & turning slab of metal fury, drummer Mario Duplantier dropping in plenty of intricate jazz fills while the two guitarists weave all sorts of crazy riffs and pinch harmonics around the mix. Fans of Meshuggah will absolutely love this cut. That industrial element shows up on the almost NIN-meets-Korn feel of "A Sight to Behold", an intriguing piece that takes the band in a seemingly new direction, and blistering death metal is all the rage on the crushers "Yama's Messengers" and "All The Tears". The influence of their time spent out with Lamb of God can be heard on "Adoration for None", probably the closest this band will ever come to the American extreme metal scene, and they do a good job of honing in on that sound with plenty of meaty riffs, manic screams, and jackhammer drum blasts. Of course, it also doesn't hurt to have Lamb of God singer Randy Blythe help out with the vocals on this one!

The real progressive piece here is the near 10-minute "The Art of Dying", opening up with some neat tribal drumming from Mario before monstrous Meshuggah styled riffs and beats come crashing into the mix, the piece filled with effective staccato riffing throughout, interspersed with moments of tranquil atmosphere, before cascading with behemoth death metal fury and going out in an eventual whimper. Breathtaking. If that one doesn't knock you on your ass, the relentless "Esoteric Surgery" follows, with even more odd-time signatures and exceptional drumming. The band throw in some doom riffs on both "Vacuity" and "Wolf Down the Earth", and the closing title track is a haunting, moody metal number with plenty of textures and colors, but don't be fooled by the 17-minute run time, as the whole second half is filled with far away guitar meanderings that echo in the distance as the tune slowly fades out.

The Way of All Flesh is a absolute triumph for Gojira, and a release that is sure to make them stars in the extreme metal world. However, this is also a CD that will take a few listens for it all to really sink in, so give it a few spins and you'll start to hear all the wonders that these songs contain. Prosthetic Records is on a roll with outstanding recent releases from The Acacia Strain, Beneath the Massacre, Neuraxis, Byzantine, All That Remains, Withered, and many add this one to the already impressive list.

Track Listing
1. Oroborus 05:21
2. Toxic Garbage Island 04:06
3. A Sight to Behold 05:09
4. Yama's Messengers 04:04
5. The Silver Cord 02:32
6. All the Tears 03:41
7. Adoration for None 06:19
8. The Art of Dying 09:53
9. Esoteric Surgery 05:44
10. Vacuity 04:51
11. Wolf Down the Earth 06:25
12. The Way of All Flesh 17:02

Added: October 6th 2008
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 4969
Language: english

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» Reader Comments:

Gojira: The Way of All Flesh
Posted by ??? on 2008-11-30 11:22:35
My Score:

While this is not as "throbbing" in sound as before. The band tightens up and brings the skill level up a couple of notches. They are getting better!

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