Okay so I know I don’t write as much for No Clean Singing as I should, being a part of the brutal triad of authors and all, but I started watching the new 72-minute pro-shot live performance by Gojira that Islander posted the other day and it inspired me to explain to all of you metalheads out there why Gojira is the best the world has to offer. So gather ’round cause it’s story time. (Explanation after the jump…)
The first thing about Gojira that jumps out at me is something that I don’t think is widely recognized, which is the fact that this band was formed in 1996 in Bayonne, France. Gojira was known as Godzilla until 2001 and since their first studio album in 2000, the band has not undergone a single lineup change. That only does more to prove this band’s dedication to their craft. They have been at it for almost 15 years, and it shows.
The members of Gojira were raised in Bayonne, which is a city on the southwest coast of France, and the surrounding countryside and rugged coastline serve as inspiration for Gojira’s interest in nature and the earth.
One of the coolest things about the band is that they play for a cause. Much of their proceeds go to various environmental protection agencies, especially those that are dedicated to the preservation of whales. In fact, many of the lyrical themes of the album From Mars to Sirius focus on that very cause. Gojira write their lyrics with purpose and many of their songs are poetic, transcendent, and beautiful to listen to. Unlike many metal bands, these guys know how to write.
Enough about the background stuff. One significant reason why Gojira is, in my honest opinion, the best metal band in the world is because they are all incredible musicians who put together perfectly constructed songs that are heavy as fuck. But the best part about Gojira is their live shows.
For me, listening to Gojira live is like having sex with Helen of Troy while she feeds you the world’s best chocolate as you lie in a bed of lavender. While that may sound a bit gay, it is the best way to describe the sensory overload that Gojira provides live. They are all so precise, and their music sounds so clear, even in the shittiest of clubs. They must use some secret magical French fairy dust or something because I have never heard another band come close to sounding as good as they do live.
Gojira may not be the most technical, progressive, or brOOtal band out there, but it doesn’t matter because every one of its four members plays with an unmatched mistake-free delicacy that combines in total harmony.
Lead guitarist and vocalist Joe Duplantier is a beast. His vocals are crystal clear and he plays with a ferocious energy that makes it apparent that he is as passionate as they come. Christian Andreu is brilliant as well. It seems as though he has fingers of gold as he never makes an error. Jean-Michel Labadie’s bass guitar is an integral part of what makes Gojira so bone-crushingly heavy. He is a perfect rhythmic backing to Joe and Christian.
And finally, Mario Duplantier. I don’t know what to say. His drum solo in the 72-minute live video is so beautifully perfect it almost makes me cry. I am not afraid to admit that I have a major man-crush on this man. He is a drumming god.
Each and every one of Gojira’s members is an outstanding musician, but when they come together, they create an unstoppable force. Each album has a distinct sound. My favorite is From Mars to Sirius because I love each and every song on the album. But my favorite Gojira song is “Love” off of their first album Terra Incognita. It is a masterwork and it is so heavy, it’s as if Jesus and Satan came together to create a musical child of unparalleled proportions.
I know it seems like I am just gushing over Gojira and it may make you want to vomit a bit in your mouth but I mean every word from the bottom of my metal-loving soul. These guys are gods among men. Simple as that.
I listen to a ton of metal and a ton of different bands that are spread out through a wide variety of genres. But if I had to describe Gojira, I would say that they stand atop their own island while all the rest of the world’s metal bands are merely fish in the sea swimming in circles attempting to figure out how to reach land. These guys are the kings of metal and it will be virtually impossible to topple their throne.
Here is an amazing video for their excellent song “Love.” If you don’t enjoy it at least 40 to 50 times I may have to kill you.