The return of Godflesh has been widely hailed and appreciated as one of the more interesting things to happen to industrial metal over the last decade or so. Comeback EP Decline and Fall started the blaze, but it was with A World Lit Only By Fire released later in the same year that Godflesh had strongly confirmed their return to the industrial metal at a time when the sub-genre was considered by many to be run-down and ultimately nearing its end. Thankfully Godflesh have since shown no signs of slowing down, as latest album Post Self will have you believe.
The latest effort from Godflesh is both a continuation of what we experienced on A World… and an expansion of thoe very ideas written into that record. The first half of Post Self is thus what we expect from Godflesh. Gritty, abrasive industrial rhythms, Broadrick’s creepy albeit satisfying vocal range, and the generally menacing, ambient atmospherics which are plastered all over the opening title track. Which pretty much means that there’s no build-up to crushing crescendos in this album: It throws you straight into the beating mechanical heart. “Parasite” is for example the heaviest and ugliest song of the album, if only because it constantly grinds a repetitive cycle of crushing rhythms and elaborates on this until the bitter end. On the flipside, even the cleaner, slightly lighter nature of “Mirror of Finite Light” largely reflects Godflesh’s work in the late 90s as well as Broadrick’s side project Jesu, for all the grandiosity at work.
However, Post Self excels itself in the second half. Whereas the first half was simply confirmation of Godflesh returning to their stylistic roots, the second half features an abudance of versatility that nobody really expected. “Be God” demonstrates a strong, absorbent energy which proves to be completely dark-tinged and is thrown into a whirlwind of industrial stabs, at times proving akin to a dull toothache and even attempting to infect the listener with its discharge of menacing sound. “Pre Self” feels like a march into a near dystopia thanks to its stabbing riffs and this strange fizzing effect that protrudes from the guitar work, meaning that the sound has been filtered through an industrial echo and results in the most unnerving noise Godflesh have been known to produce. Finally, there’s even an attempt at producing what can only be referred to as a soundtrack for a disturbing Sci-Fi/Horror movie, whereby “Mortality Sorrow” reaches out to all emotions and fuses them together into one 5-minute demonstration of rhythmic menace and unsettling ambiance.
It’s with these many forays into different styles that Godflesh have now proved themselves to be at the top of their league once again. Make no mistake, no Industrial Metal album released this year sounds as utterly convincing and unsettling as Post Self, but knowing that it’s Godflesh, it doesn’t seem so surprising. That said, this latest effort proves that the band are always forward-thinking in their approach and the delivery seems even more adventurous the more you listen to it. Post Self both satisfies Godflesh’s fans and confounds belief that a band now over 25 years old are still producing music of this quality.
Released: November 17th, 2017
- Post Self
- No Body
- Mirror of Finite Light
- Be God
- The Cyclic End
- Pre Self
- Mortality Sorrow
- In Your Shadow
- The Infinite End
Official Bandpage: https://www.facebook.com/Godflesh-11374368195/