- Audio CD (19 Aug 2003)
- Label: pid
- ASIN: B000A2P5LM
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,404,659 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
GYBE's all instrumental approach avoids the pitfalls of dull politico-rock, realising that the frame around their music is the place where some kind of dialectic with their audience is likely to happen. The two part "09-15-00" takes on a different significance when the story around its title is revealed (it's a reference to a major incursion into Palestine by the Israeli Army); then the music becomes invisible soundtrack, evoking shaky handheld DV footage of petrol bombs, gutted buildings, tanks rolling through streets. Though GYBE (literally) wear their political sympathies on their sleeves, the music itself has an ambiguous yet important role to play; an unmediated, emotional response to the uncertainties of the early 21st century. (Use it as a soundtrack to Newsnight for best results).
Despite Steve Albini's reductionistpresence at the controls, the sound is still big; electric guitars, string quartet and drums engage each other in a kind of stretched, stripped prog rock that unwinds itself slowly. Insistent ostinati are woven through with mournful melodic lines, building to skullcrunch intensity and falling away again. If Stravinsky was still around, he'd be a fan.
Though GYBE's amped up minimalism is often as dark as pitch, there are episodes of beauty and even hope (as in the last few minutes of the first part of "Motherf***er= Redeemer"). But for the most part the music is taut, suffused with a ragged but determined power that has few equals among their contemporaries. There's none of the spoken narrative and location recordings of previous releases, which is a shame, but Godspeed have moved on to new pastures. Superb.
Like This? Try These:
Einóma - Undir, Feilnótu
Limp - Orion
Set Fire to Flames - Sings Reign Rebuilder --Peter Marsh
Find more music at the BBC This link will take you off Amazon in a new window
The albums' shadings of light and dark (not so much as the fast and slow) is quite incredible, and this makes it a good start to finish listen. Some of the melodies are very unforgettable and this album, when listened to in the correct frame of mind, can become quite addictive. It's certainly a better focused, more complete and consistent album than their previous ones (which where also excellent), despite slightly lacking in the variety of 'Lift Your Skinny Fists....' There's also more emotion to be found amongst the mayhem- although not quite as sad as 'Lift Your Skinny Fists' or 'F#A#Oo' it's far more devastating and scary.
I can't understand it when people call Godspeed! a demanding band. Judging from this, they simply aren't (although maybe with previous albums/eps). This album is like a cross between incidental movie music at its peak with a lot of attention payed to melody and construction. What's so difficult about that?
I guess it's the lack of lyrics.Read more ›
It never zooms along at high speed, but crawls, not too slowly, but still crawls, and this all adds to the amazing effect of GYBE. You can feel emotion distilled in the music, everything that comes out from it comes with pure emotion. And the fact that these songs were written to portray wars just adds to that effect. You can almost imagine the armies marching along and then when all the music finally comes together they're commensing battle, and then it dies down and the battle is over, but only one side is victorious, but there is something calm about the victory. All these portrayed by music. It's just simply amazing.
If you like music to be short songs, don't buy this. If you like long, beautiful instrumental masterpieces buy this now. You won't regret it. This was my first GYBE buy after hearing one song off a previous album, and I cannot get enough of it.
It's taken me a lot of listenings to click what it reminded me of, namely Rimskykorsakov's Scheherazade. Before I'm pounced on for seeming to be pretencious, let me explain what I mean by sayng that the music on UXO uses the same devices. The same solo violin sounds throughout all of the tracks ie the same 'voice' can be heard, and to me, at least, it has a Middle Eastern accent to it...
This gets 4 stars instead of 5 from me because I sort of miss the sampled voices. But I do admire them for taking the decision to make an album purely of music, minus the 'gimmickry'. It works, and it works well. It is melodic, it is frightening, it is angry, it is hopeless, but it is always beautiful, even when you can hear the bombs striking home in Rockets Fall...
I wish more people could get to know Godspeed. But then a selfish part of me thinks that that might just strip them of some of their appeal. A fine album from an excellent band who are not afriad to say what they think ... if only we care to listen.