Friday, November 2, 2007

Decibel reviews Jesu's "Lifeline" EP:

thanks to Andrew Parks and the Decibel staff!


Hydra Head

When flesh becomes brilliant

Dude, slow down. Actually, strike that. Please cancel your current tour and head back to Wales ASA-fucking-P. By the sounds of this EP and everything else you’ve released this year (remixes that are more like reinterpretations, the towering tracks on Conqueror, a limited split with Eluvium), that was what you were put on this earth to do, Justin Broadrick: Sit in your quaint, seaside home and write a steady stream of songs for the world to zone out to—songs that are beginning to sound suspiciously similar (sluggish drum programming; MASSIVE, swamp-dredging guitar tones; lightly-sweetened singing of the “you are getting sleeeeepy” variety), sure, but stunning songs nonetheless.

The same post-Godflesh paint box is scrapped and smeared all over Lifeline, but Broadrick does manage to make slight changes, enough to hint different directions for Jesu LP No. 3. For one thing, the metal portion of his metalgaze masterpieces is slowly being drained out, leaving lots of multi-track room for headphone-happy effects and the shimmering, swirling electronic music he’s toyed with since he formed Final in the ’80s. Aside from that, “Storm Comin’ On”—Broadrick’s best song of the year, hands down—is a nerve-wracking reminder of what a great producer he is (see all those Techno Animal albums he did in the ’90s). By dropping Jarboe in a room full of guillotine guitars and bouncy ball beats, Broadrick brings the Swans obsession of his youth full circle (he’s been known to credit Cop as a crucial creative inspiration after leaving Napalm Death) and suggests just how much he’d benefit from playing with others more. That’s right: Paging Kevin Martin... Kevin, where are you? —Andrew Parks