Gojira
L'Enfant Sauvage


4.5
superb

Review

by Brendan Schroer USER (179 Reviews)
August 7th, 2012 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A breath of fresh air.

Gojira. Just the mention of the band's name will cause a plethora of scattered opinions ranging from adoration to disgust, as rarely does there come a band as polarizing. With the previous four records, it was clear that Gojira's sound wasn't exactly bound to change, to many people sounding like a more passionate take on Meshuggah-style extreme metal. However, it seems we've finally seen a break from many of the norms this band is known for. L'Enfant happens to be a bit of a rarity in the current state of metal, pulling off brutality and elegance almost perfectly.

What we have here is the band's sound finally coming together and reaching a peak lyrically and musically. Instrumentally, more variation is brought to the table, with the chunky guitar/bass duo being balanced out with the aforementioned elegance, with an extra-melodic side producing a nice atmospheric flavor. The album also happens to be among the band's darkness, only rivaled by The Way of All Flesh; correct me if I'm wrong, but the lyrics seem to convey a sense of freedom and its cost in this world. Songs like "Explosia" and "Liquid Fire" certainly seem to put that concept on display.

Speaking of "Explosia", that happens to be the grand opener, and what an impression it makes! While the song starts out in typical Gojira fashion, with all the thick guitar chords, extremely precise drumming patterns, and Pantera-esque squeals, the second half reveals something more... an identity and a heart. This is especially prevalent in the cathartic moment right in the middle portion where a dark textural feel edges out the brutality and Joe Duplantier sounds very passionate in his near-desperate-sounding shouts.

The "identity" and "heart" are exactly what sets this apart from a lot of the other work Gojira's released; it sounds like Gojira have finally found a sound they're content with, and songs like the reflective "Born in Winter" and the eerie suspenseful "The Gift of Guilt" sound generally more enticing than previous efforts. Much of the reason is that there sounds like a drive and a flow to these songs; more feeling if you will.

Again, though, if you're looking for that heavy edge that originally made this band so notable, the album should appeal to those in that camp as well. "Planned Obsolescence" emphasizes Mario Duplantier's nimble double-bass drumming while the aggressive title track definitely has that "chugga-chugga" feel in the rhythm section as the guitars synchronize and put the riffs into overdrive.

There really isn't much more to say. This has been a long time coming for Gojira, but they seem to have finally found their identity and made a fantastic album that's equal parts bloody and beautiful. What came of this is progressive extreme metal with a real sense of atmosphere and melody to balance out the pummeling brutality. Highly recommended.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
macadoolahicky
August 7th 2012


1835 Comments


It's no 4.5, I'll tell you that right now

macadoolahicky
August 7th 2012


1835 Comments


Hurrrrr

BodomThrashMachine
August 7th 2012


316 Comments


Agreed.

TheNotrap
August 7th 2012


8108 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"...pulling off brutality and elegance almost perfectly".
Indeed man. Album's great.

Very nice review, have a pos.

Digging: Threshold - For The Journey

KILL
August 7th 2012


71856 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

lol

Digging: A Guy Called Gerald - Black Secret Technology

TheNotrap
August 7th 2012


8108 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

You guys need to jam some Gojira asap

TheNotrap
August 7th 2012


8108 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Only 2 Sonic? C'mon man album rocks.

BlindHouse
August 7th 2012


80 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album's great, although some songs are definitely stronger than others. It's all about the riffs.

macadoolahicky
August 7th 2012


1835 Comments


The album's closer to a 3 than it is a 4. They practically offered nothing new here.

ZedO
August 7th 2012


1096 Comments


ugh still haven't got a chance listening to this

drewkar
August 7th 2012


98 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

album is so boring

Digging: Islander - Violence and Destruction

ZedO
August 7th 2012


1096 Comments


well i won't waste my time for this

tarkus
August 7th 2012


5560 Comments


elegant brutality

MrElmo
August 7th 2012


1955 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

album is cool lads, more entertaining than interesting obviously but works fine by me

BodomThrashMachine
August 7th 2012


316 Comments


I missed you riff, you're still as hilarious as ever. ;)

don't change plz.

Jangoman
August 27th 2013


32 Comments


"This is especially prevalent in the cathartic moment right in the middle portion"

Nailed that moment.

FiveLeavesLeft
February 4th 2014


9838 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

\m/



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