The Young Gods
Only Heaven


4.0
excellent

Review

by DoofusWainwright CONTRIBUTOR (62 Reviews)
November 3rd, 2015 | 9 replies


Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Were you considered an insufferable ponce for singing with a French accent back in ‘95?

The Young Gods were one of those 90’s bands who were supposed to break through to the next level of success but for whatever reason hit an impenetrable ceiling to their ambitions. In 1995 the big time came a-knockin' for this Swiss industrial tinged three-piece when they were snapped up by Interscope for the release of their fifth album; the band certainly rose to the occasion, laying down the positively monolithic ‘Only Heaven’, and yet despite their best endeavours that true breakthrough moment remained stubbornly elusive. The reason for this failure is hard to pinpoint; were The Young Gods too experimental for the industrial crowd or was their music dismissed for lacking the required level of harshness. Put bluntly, did Franz Treichler’s strong accent prove far too...well, 'French', for the mainstream rock fan to stomach?

A large portion of industrial rock comes across stiffer than C-3PO's dinner jacket so one of the great boons of The Young Gods approach is that they sound so elastic and supple; these refined Europeans never resort to the unsophisticated approach of repetitively pummelling your senses to oblivion. Instead abstract loops and waves of synth provide sensual textures more commonly associated with dance genres like trance to give the album a unique crossover flavour. The synthesis of these elements feels totally natural and the overall effect when combined with the thundering drums and sleekly ferocious guitars is of a futuristic tribal communion of orgasmic proportions. In particular the sixteen minute mini-suite ‘Moon Revolutions’ sounds like it could break free of the Earth’s gravity and shoot off into the cosmos at any given moment.

When The Young Gods give in to their base urge to slap the listener around the chops the results are quite something to behold; ‘Kissing the Sun’ is clinical in delivering that hit of adrenaline every time the drums and guitars spring into life and the song practically begs for you to turn that volume dial to maximum; ‘Strangel’ is more of a churner and those bass tones in the chorus clearly inspired Bowie on his ‘97 Earthling album; while ‘Speed of Night’ captures the addictive sensation of coolly gliding through a tunnel at high velocity perfectly.

The 'atypical for industrial' white sleeve and album title are most clearly reflected in the more ambient material presented here, the most impressive examples of which being the trip hop inflected ‘Donnesz Les Esprits’ and the gurgling liquid textures of ‘Dreamhouse’. Flashes of these styles pepper all the songs on ‘Only Heaven’ and give the album added depth and a unified spirit, a sort of woozy narcotic dream state running underneath the surface layers.

Overall the album has aged incredibly well with Roli Mossiman’s impeccable production in particular standing out as way ahead of the game; so when you also take into consideration the album’s visionary musical approach it becomes a real head scratcher trying to understand why this album remains such a forgotten and unheralded work. It’s 2015; everyone owns at least one Air album, surely we’ve now arrived at the point where we can accept a rock star singing with a thick French accent. Ah oui? Très bon.



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user ratings (13)
Chart.
4.2
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
November 3rd 2015


7550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is such a great maximum volume headphone listen

Digging: The Psychedelic Furs - Talk Talk Talk

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
November 3rd 2015


7550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

No one on sput kisses the sun then...

RadicalEd
November 4th 2015


6980 Comments


Never heard of these guys. Good review, may check this out.

Digging: Faunts - Ostalgia

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2015


7550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Cheers Ed, I think I've finally reviewed a band absolutely no one has heard of on here. My work is done.

RadicalEd
November 4th 2015


6980 Comments


I hope that doesn't mean you will stop reviewing ;). Just queued up a song by them on dubtrack. Will see what this is about.

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2015


7550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'd say I'll quit reviewing but then something new will come out and I'll want to be more opinionated than a sound off allows and...review.



Bit of context, when asked whether NIN were his biggest influence on the Outside album Bowie allegedly said "no, Young Gods". You can definitely hear the influence at times on Outside and Earthing.

TheCrocodile
November 4th 2015


2326 Comments


yo a Young Gods review on here for real!

Thanks so much Doof for a well written review, don't think more people will check them out, but this is better than nothing.

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2015


7550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Trust the croc to know a good thing, was starting to worry there wasn't another Young Gods fan on the site

TheCrocodile
November 5th 2015


2326 Comments


wouldn't say I'm a fan because I'll admit I haven't even heard this one, but these guys are still really good and unique and deserve more exposure on here it's just crazy. Only one I heard is L'Eau Rouge and review made me aware that it's been a while since I spun it... might get this one too or Play Kurt Weill, we'll see.



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