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Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Yanqui U.X.O. CD (album) cover


Godspeed You! Black Emperor


Post Rock/Math rock

3.97 | 290 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars Where Godspeed You! Black Emperor perfected their sound...

Over time I have amassed Godspeed's three albums and EP, and I found all of them (before this one) slightly dissatisfactory in some way. It just seemed like the band had a lot of good music in them, but theydidn't know how to filter out the sub-par moments, that didn't the spectacular revalationatory sound of other times in the songs. What made it worse was that it seemed like almost every song had moments that were lacking. One exception I think is 'Antennas to Heaven' off of their second album, and that remains my favorite song by them.

What changed on this album I do not know. But now the sound is more natural, it seems like the sections flow together in a way that makes sense, to create a very round, complete feeling. One effect that makes the feeling on this album sound so universal that I have noticed is that all extended notes that are hit then fade out rather than stoping have vibrato to them. This sound is not obtrusive at all but adds a very mysterious quality to all of the songs.

That brings me back to my initial argument. This album, literally, has no bad moments, or times that the band sounds misguided at all. It flows more perfectly than I've heard any Post-Rock I've heard before.

It starts very well, with the first section in '9-15-00 Part 1' very reminiscient of the beggining of 'Storm' off of their last album, with a very bright sound and a natural crescendo. This song has many storybook moments for the band, and I can find myself actually humming some of the repeated melodies of this song at times. Part two is a bit darker and serves for preparing you for the sound of the next song. It is though, very melodic and not static at all, as some may have said before.

"Rockets fall on Rocket Falls" is the most individual song on this album, and is basically 'figure a' for this albums reputation for being sad. It is basically an audio representation of, you guessed it, a bombing. The first seven minutes cure as an optimistic pretext for what is to come, then a steady marching drum beat starts and is slowly built on for the rest of the song. Explaining it like that makes it sound quite dull, but I assure you, this is quite possibly the greatest crescendo to climax that Godspeed has ever done.

"Motherf*cker=Redeemer Part 1" is a bit of an oddball for Godspeed, but I have liked it since the first time I heard it. You can divide this song into 3 basic parts, though they go into each other easily. The first is the begining that is comprised of this very soft 'ping' sound. That sound ventually loses its tempo as it's taken over by more instruments that lead it into the second part, which starts roughly at the fourth minute. This part is actually rather more symphonic progressive than anything else this band has done, with a steady drum beat and a polymelody going on in the background, with an eventual guitar solo going on above that. The sound is very controlled and doesn't drift too far from Godspeed's normal sound. The third part of this song is comprised of the last ten minutes. This begins as a repeated guitar sound is used. This never becomes dull before it is changed with a heavier sound being used in front of it. That quickly goes away and fades intoa more melodic sound that finishes the song.

"Motherf*cker=Redeemer Part 2" is quite similar throughout but it never overstays its welcome, and ends rather quickly with the intruments fading to feedback.

Despite this being my favorite album by the band, it is tough to understand, and not an album I would have gotten before having owned the other ones by this band. At that point you can decipher which parts of the band you enjoy the most. If you feel this may be a great addition after doing that, buying the album can do no harm.

idoownu | 5/5 |


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