The Way Of All Flesh
Listenable Records/Prosthetic Records
13 October 2008
by Salvadore Fernandez
After breaking through with their astounding third album, From Mars To Sirius, the well-read French quartet are back with another crushing slab of progressive death metal. And yes, once again there is a profound message underneath their mesmeric tones.
This time Gojira have decided to have a look at our mortality. How do we live? How do we die? It’s a slight departure from the flying whale-hunting concept of their previous effort.
The music is as ruthless and uncompromising as ever. ‘Oroborus’ follows on almost directly from From Mars To Sirius with it’s rhythmic guitars and crushing choruses. They have grown their sound naturally but definitely. They have matured and consolidated all the greatness of their previous works and put it all into their latest opus.
Each song has the solid death metal foundations that we’re used to by now but it’s the unpredictable peppering of unorthodox but always astounding riffs and Joe Duplantier’s intriguingly furious vocal nuances that make Gojira’s music so readily identifiable.
Watch the video to ‘Vacuity’ by Gojira
It’s almost a given, but it’s important to point out that there are absolutely no ballads on this record. There are no nauseating mid-tempo, made-for-radio “songs” on here either.
The closest you get to the former is the instrumental respite of ‘The Silver Cord’. Without that, this record would be truly relentless. For the latter, just feel the juddering, brooding lead single, ‘Vacuity’ stomping toward you through your FM stereo.
This metal is compelling and consistent in both its purity and delivery. There are no trendy hardcore breakdowns to appease ADD sufferers; there are no deviations from the band’s distinctive style. If you listen to this album, you’re listening to Gojira tell you a story.
Watch the video for ‘To Sirius’ by Gojira
The beautiful complexities of ‘A Sight To Behold’ and the war music of ‘The Art Of Dying’ make for exhausting listening. This music demands your undivided attention. There is nothing here for the background of a dinner party.
If you ignore the fact that Gojira are the kind of people that would stop to help a beached whale get back into its more familiar oceanic climes then you miss half the point of this album. Immerse yourself in this band. You won’t regret it.
Watch Randy Blythe interview Gojira
One man that has done exactly that is Lamb Of God’s Randy Blythe. After touring together and collaborating onstage in 2007, Blythe claimed to be Gojira’s biggest fan in the US. The fact that he appears on the plundering ‘Adoration For None’ with his unique snarl is testament to this. While his cameo is certainly a big endorsement for this album, it is in no way a gimmick.
With The Way Of All Flesh, Gojira have created one of the most complete metal albums of this decade. Sit up, open your ears and minds and take note because this band is coming your way whether you like it or not.
Gojira – The Way Of All Flesh tracklisting
Toxic Garbage Island
A Sight To Behold
The Silver Cord
Adoration For None
All The Tears
The Art Of Dying
Wolf Down The Earth
The Way Of All Flesh