Jesu
Christmas


4.0
excellent

Review

by Bob Vance, Vance Refrigeration USER (56 Reviews)
December 30th, 2010 | 16 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It's Christmas: the time when we all joyfully celebrate the birth of Jesu's... new Christmas EP.

It's that time of year again. The church band is playing U2-esque renditions of Chistmas hymns, August Burns Red just released another Christmas cover, and a 15-song playlist of my parents' creation has been going on repeat for what seems like months by now. Music in the Christmas season is almost always predictable and unchanging. That is, until everyone's favorite experimental metal titan Justin Broadrick decides to come and screw it all up by releasing a Christmas EP that is neither a breakdown-infested cover nor a cheesy singalong CCM track.

The EP consists of three songs: the centerpeice title track and two remixes of said song. The title track is one of Jesu's most straightforward tracks in recent memory. This is not a 50-minute track of an undefineable genre, nor does it feature waves of ambiance and electronics. It's just droptuned sludge riffs merged with Broadrick's pasisonate (yet quiet) cleans, and is a "short" track, at "only" about 9 minutes. It retains a slow pace througout its runtime, all of which is filled to the brim with deliciously distorted riffage and, at times, layers of cleaner, higher guitars over the leads. The lyrics bring a bit of lightheartedness, whether intentionally or not, to an otherwise emotionally poignant track, with the listener easily being able to pick out mentions of sleigh bells and Christmas every now and then over a thick, meaty riff. It's not what one would expect, but it really wouldn't be a Christmas song without Christmas-related lyrics, right?

The other two tracks of the EP are remixes of the centerpeice, and they both bring something new and interesting to the table. The Pale Sketcher Remix is the EP's shortest track by far, clocking in at under 6 minutes. It utilizes layers of ambiance, acoustic guitars, electronic percussion, choral vocals, and various other effects (including, of course, sleigh bells) to create a surprisingly engaging ambient track. The second remix, the FINAL Remix, is a more straightforward slab of ambient noise, bringing to mind acts such as Stars of the lid at times. It clocks in at over 14 minutes of length, and it prominently features what seems to be a super slowed-down version of the EP's main track to complement the SOTL-like ambiance.

Justin Broadrick has created some of the most interesting and unique Christmas tunes in recent memory. This surprisingly diverse EP features a bit of everything, from sludge to drone to electronic to ambient (and sleigh bells), and is all the better for it. If only other artists had the musical ingenuity and the willingness to experiment that the Godflesh legend has, Christmas would be a much more interesting time for music. But we all know that it's a long shot, so for now we are stuck with an exemplary EP that is musically good enough to deserve casual listens through a good set of earbuds and is Christmas-y enough to sneak into your parents' holiday playlist. Jesu has just made the season a bit more awesome, and for that, we thank the man.



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user ratings (47)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
wyankeif1337
December 30th 2010


6739 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i wanted to sumbit this on Christmas, but it didn't happen. oh well... at least i managed before 2011.

DarkNoctus
Contributing Reviewer
December 30th 2010


8896 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

good review, didn't like this much though.

Rev
December 30th 2010


9436 Comments


I still need to get this. Great review

dreamobile
December 30th 2010


416 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

does anybody have the lyrics to this?

wyankeif1337
December 30th 2010


6739 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nope. All I know is that it involves sleigh bells.

wyankeif1337
December 30th 2010


6739 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

it's good?

North0House
December 30th 2010


1764 Comments


Ew, Christmas.

Dryden
December 30th 2010


12928 Comments


ya fuck that

eternium
December 30th 2010


16338 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I wish I had known about this on Christmas Day.

crazyblinddude
December 31st 2010


3389 Comments


I'm gonna have to check this out soon. His other stuff is pretty cool.

DarkNoctus
Contributing Reviewer
December 31st 2010


8896 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

pfft I prefer Opiate Sun to this

Photon
January 7th 2011


1292 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

OMG new Jesu.

Skhrnykhsk
January 18th 2011


48 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

UNNECESSARY remixes.

InbredJed
December 21st 2013


6074 Comments


Opiate Sun is crazy good

Rev
December 21st 2013


9436 Comments


that time of the year again

zaruyache
December 21st 2013


6866 Comments


Happy winter solstice, everyone.

Digging: Ardour Loom - Demo



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