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Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is extremely cool ... 4.5 stars from me. A really extreme kind of music, with sometimes quite brutal double bass drumming, heavy, thrash metal guitars riffing and growling/screaming vocals ... but it's not really aggressive, I'd rather call it hypnotic and even avant-garde to some extent. Meshuggah are an obvious influence - but more in terms of sound and texturing (Nothing/Catch 33) than complexity. Some parts also remind me of Devin Townsend ... sudden outbursts of heaviness followed by epic/majestic textural parts.

The album deals with issues like global warming ... saving the oceans, which explains the whale on the cover. If you can tolerate the heavy parts and the screaming then listening to this album from beginning to end can really take you on a fascinating journey through time, space ... and water.

Report this review (#114830)
Posted Sunday, March 11, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Extremely plesent find. I had heard of Gojira in an offhand mannor from an Isis fan and thought that they would be simmiler so i looked them up and saw some good reviews and more Isis connections. SOooo when i was browsing my local i saw it and decided to pick it up. good move. it reminds me a lot of mastodon. the vocals are a little more one dimmensional and the guitars not AS complex but they are still very unique in their own way. Texture here is a huge part of Gojira's music, sweeping, majestic layers of sound. its still very heavy, but it doesnt make you want to headbang. its trippy, MikeEnRegalia got it right when he said its hypnotic or avant/garde, and therin lies the connection to Isis. the use of reptative riffs and structures, all layered with the awesome textures that kind of lull you off into the oceans and whales Gojira sing about. Really cool CD
Report this review (#114852)
Posted Sunday, March 11, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars I'm not really sure why this disc is on progarchives. I can't really call it prog metal as much as I can call it extreme heavy metal. This being said, there are some really neat things going on in this album. The vocals are mostly scream, so if you're not a fan of that, you won't like this one. The music sounds very heavy and distorted, but what makes it interesting to me is the music's ability to make you think that a melody is present, even when its not being sung. This is thanks to the guitars and their melodic lines that blend right into the style of music. For the prog enthusiast, there are a few tempo and rhythmic changes that occur in the album, and for the metal head, there is plenty to love about this one. There are some great guitar sound effects that add to the personality of the music and make it sound playful at times despite its obvious heaviness. I really enjoy this cd for what it is - metal that has some actual thought put behind it. It deals with the whole global warming thing, and has some really cool whale sounds going on. Gojira will be a very interesting metal band, and if you like your metal very heavy with (very)subtle prog influences, this is probably a cd you'll enjoy. If this was a metal site, this would get a perfect 5 stars, but for its lack of much prog, I can only give it 4.
Report this review (#124288)
Posted Friday, June 1, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Recently i have found myself listening to this band more and more, prompting me to write this review. im not going to be saying much that hasnt already been said; great textures, soundscapes, repetative riffs and structures that bring to mind meshuggah or isis without sounding like messhuggah or isis. very heavy stuff here but it is also emotional, which is where i would like to focus on the last four songs: world to come, from mars, to sirius, and global warming. this is the part of the album i honestly cannot wait for. i feel as if the rest of the disc is a build up for this grand conclusion if you will. great opener, then building, building, building up sound, peaks of heavyness, valleys of mellow textures (flying whales), always this sense of a journey. the last four songs seem to be a conclusion, a realization. i love the guitar especially on from mars. very beautiful, and foreboding which explodes into to sirius and then builds and comes to a climax in global warming, a truly majestic epic of a song. very moving ending that left me wanting more gojira. I dont particularly know why i like gojira, as i am not really into other bands that get lumped into the same category of similarity, but whatever it is, they have it. highly recomended, though not for everyone.
Report this review (#138304)
Posted Friday, September 14, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Thanks to Ansen (The Miracle) for leading me to what is now officially the heaviest metal album in my collection. This band is a freight train coming straight through your living room. Never has being pummeled been so much fun.

The sound is so unique here. The drumming is so heavy and forefront that it's almost as if the drums are the lead instrument on several tracks, totally burying the axemen. Guitars are fierce but mostly paint a wall of thrash sound as opposed to solos. There are not the traditionally wailing lead solos to be found here. The vocals sound to me like Henry Rollins cross-bred with Tyrannosaurus Rex, absolute hellfire but yet oddly soothing to me. I like to listen to this album in rush hour traffic as it keeps me from having a Michael Douglas "Falling Down" moment. There is more of the metronomic mechanical blast drumming than I prefer but it seems to work way better on this album than others.

Better than half of the tracks are pure heavy thrash with monster riffs and complex drumming. But the rest of the album does have some very nice departures that make this album special and add more dimension. The first is the instrumental "Unicorn" which is simply a pleasant repetitive clean guitar riff along with a subdued drum beat and sound effects that I believe are the whales in the background. It doesn't sound like much when you first hear it but it has a great peaceful atmosphere. "Flying Whales" is a standout that begins in a similar vein to "Unicorn" although more ambitious with good conversation between guitar, bass and drums. "World to Come" will alternate the undead-Rollins voice with a second clean voice. This along with a slower pace and a more notes-based lead guitar provides yet another sound for the band. "From Mars" is great, sounding like an early psych Floyd track with a metal edge-Syd would approve. The grand finale of "Global Warming" is truly a metal epic where they assemble the various aspects of their sound into a dramatic anthem with several good sections. Repetition in both the lead guitar hammer-on lick and the last hopeful line "we will see our children growing" bolster the sense that perhaps the chaos of earlier songs is turning to more stability; nicely wrapping up what has been quite a musical journey.

Yes this is masochist heavy, but I think it's one of the most unique metal albums I've heard and I have really grown to appreciate it. I can't wait to hear their next one. If you love metal, this one will float your boat, or fly your inner whale.

Report this review (#140573)
Posted Tuesday, September 25, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Really well structed metal songs and epic atmosphere make Gojira a pretty unique band (all though Isis comes to mind).

Big sounding riffs that repeat each other give the songs, most about global warming and the wellfare of planet earth, a great sense of urgency that needs to be listened to. Fantastic production value gives the low, crunching chords an extra bass boost that is needed in a metal-driven sound.

Some other metal bands have a ridiculous and over-the-top sound with lyrics that would scare most small children, but Gojira has something to say (whether i believe what they're saying or not) and that gives the well structured songs a more emotional depth to them. One of the better metal albums i have in my collection.

Report this review (#142393)
Posted Saturday, October 6, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Gojira is probably one of the heaviest bands ever. I do like it, though, because it is also extremely technical. One thing I do NOT like, though, is the vocals. I don't like the screaming.

The trippiest song is probably Ocean Planet. It is very unusual in the solo. Backbone is more of a straightforward metal song. Flying Whales is more atmospheric, with whale sounds in the beginning.

Overall, many people either think of this album a spark of brilliance or a bad and uncreative one. I personally feel that it should be in the middle.

Report this review (#160517)
Posted Friday, February 1, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is a very fine album, but i really need to me in the mood to sit through it. Really!

Gojira's third opus is their latest release i have so far and the first album from this french band that i ever bought and i have to say that i am not disappointed. Although not being very fond of groove metal, because i think the music seems to drag, seems to be way slower than i should be, meaning that they should be played, at least, twice as fast, i really liked this album.

However, the extremer version of groove metal that Gojira presents somehow called my attention, maybe because they rely less on the groove and play, lets say, 10 riffs when it should be only 1 in ordinary grove metal, making their music sound thick or full. Maybe they play some kind of thrashened or deathened groove metal. Besides their music also have progressive influences and a considerably deal technicality. But groove metal was born from thrash metal, so maybe that are doing the reverse way, or maybe uniting father and son? I don't know. I just know that what they do sounds better than the average groove metal bands.

Although Gojira does an interesting mix of styles, that is not the only thing. They also do a wall of sound similar to the one Meshuggah does: both guitars and the bass playing at the same time, although here one guitar is playing apparently faster than the other, and the drums playing the same rhythm as one of the guitars, at least in the heavy songs, making their music sound the way it sounds, at least in the album From Mars to Sirius.

This album is also a concept album, that tells about the environmental change on Earth and that humanity must do something save Earth before its all lost. The story follows a character that sees the world's end and starts a journey to find the Flying Whales, that could teach him how to fly. The character somehow goes to the fictional star Sirius C where a master race teaches him how to restore life on Earth.

One very interesting thing is that this album is my favorite album for stargazing, it really is. I really don't know why that is, because i listen to a lot of space rock albums, but i don't like them very much to stargaze.

The headlights go to: Ocean Planet, From the Sky, Flying Whales, In the Wilderness, From Mars, To Sirius and Global Warming.

Grade and Final Thoughts

Well, From Mars to Sirius is a pretty good album, but the thing is: i think this album is way too long. It is good music, but sometimes i get tired of it in the middle of the album. So, to sit through it, i need to be in the right mood. Maybe they should be influenced by Meshuggah in more ways they are now and keep their albums below the 60 minutes mark, but preferably below or very close to the 50 minutes, like the said swedish band usually does. So for putting out a good bot overlong album, i will give to them 4 stars.

Report this review (#204164)
Posted Monday, February 23, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars What a fantastic album, these guys really are genius musicians, every song is just flawless and perfect, the heavy, melodic, catchy rifts, make you shake your head in awe and amazement. And if your a drummer I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this album to you, and you'll need to listen to To Sirius- amazing double bass, Flying Whales - which is like a drum solo the whole song, Ocean Planet, In the Wilderness, and From Mars. I would consider this Musicians Music its full of virtuosity and chops and you can really respect these musicians for the time spent to put together this groove centered hardcore-technical music together.

The whole album is 5 stared in my Itunes and that is a rarity.

Report this review (#209046)
Posted Saturday, March 28, 2009 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "From Mars to Sirius" is the 3rd full-length studio album by French progressive death/thrash metal act Gojira. The album was released through Listenable/Prosthetic Records in September 2005. It´s the successor to "The Link" from 2003. While "The Link (2003)" had already made the world well aware of who Gojira were, "From Mars to Sirius" further helped raise the band´s profile on the metal scene. They took the successful formula of the predecessor and expanded upon it. When listening to the stylistic development between the first three Gojira albums, it´s obvious the band were going through a fast moving development process and "From Mars to Sirius" was the culmination of the early stage of the band´s career. The next upward step to greatness and success.

Stylistically the music on "From Mars to Sirius" is technically well played and progressive death/thrash metal. The main vocal style is raw shouting/semi-growling, but there are sections featuring clean vocals on the album too. The music is rooted in the groove laden part of the thrash metal movement of the 90s and artists like Sepultura, (early) Meshuggah, and Machine Head, but there are some death metal traits in the music too. Considering all the heavy and sharp riffs and rhythms featured on the album, "From Mars to Sirius" is actually a very atmospheric release though. There´s often a melancholic "the world will go down the drain if we don´t do something to stop the environmental issues and world conflicts" type atmosphere present, and I´m reminded of an artist like Killing Joke. So the various elements which make up the whole, aren´t necessarily that original, but the way the elements are combined and the tracks are constructed, provide Gojira with a relatively unique sound.

Highlights include tracks like "Backbone", "Where Dragons Fall", "The Heaviest Matter of the Universe", and "To Sirius", but "From Mars to Sirius" is a highly consistent release. It´s both a positive and a negative, but more about that in the conclusion below.

The musicianship is on a high level on all posts. Gojira are obviously very skilled, but they are also passionate about delivering their music and that´s audible too. "From Mars to Sirius" features a powerful, detailed, and well sounding production, which suits the material perfectly. So upon conclusion it´s a high quality release by Gojira. Featuring 12 tracks and a full playing time of 66:58 minutes it outstays its welcome a bit and a few tracks could have been left off the album and it would most likely have been a little more concise and "sharp", but as it is, it´s still a great quality release and the extra minutes of playing time is a minor issue. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.

Report this review (#220003)
Posted Saturday, June 6, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars Man this is heavy ! Finnforest is right in comparing it to a freight train rushing through your living room. Thankfully there are some moments of relief but at 67 minutes I do find it too long. The growly vocals are something I get used to after a while but honestly i'm not a fan of them. GOJIRA are from France and they give us sort of a concept album here dealing with how mankind is ruining our planet and how we need to get our act together. They take the screaming in your face approach. Haha.

"Ocean Planet" is one of the best tracks on here. It starts off with the sounds of whales before the heaviness kicks in.The singer reminds me of someone I know but I can't put my finger on it. Great sound 2 minutes in then the vocals return. The tempo picks up. Themes are repeated. "Backbone" is an incredible song. Defiant vocals with pounding drums and riffs. "From The Sky" is relentless with the riffs and drums. "Unicorn" is a welcome relief from the onslaught. The sound of whales and a relaxing beat for 2 minutes. "Where Dragons Dwell" has some great lyrics and a punishing soundscape. "The Heaviest Matter In The Universe" is freaking heavy (big surprise).

"Flying Whales" is like another intermission where we can regroup. This sounds so good. Would love to hear more of this style with the chunky bass and powerful undercurrent. Guitar kicks in at 2 1/2 minutes, vocals and the rampage follows. It settles again after 5 1/2 minutes before kicking in to end it. "In The Wilderness" features growly vocals and a heavy as hell soundscape. "World To Come" has some pretty cool lyrics. Vocals before 1 1/2 minutes. This isn't as heavy and the guitar is more distinct. Some great drum work late. A top three track for sure. "From Mars" has almost whispered vocals and a retrained sound. "To Sirius" is anything but restrained as he spits out the lyrics. "Global Warming" sounds great with the guitar swirling and the pounding drums. Normal vocals here too until before 4 minutes.Then back to the previous soundscape to end it.

A must for Tech / Extreme fans. I wish this was my style of Metal. 3.5 stars.

Report this review (#240344)
Posted Saturday, September 19, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars From Mars to Sirius is in alot of ways like a rebirth for progressive metal. While their previous albums had some great tracks it never took off like From Mars to Siriys did. While the metal scene grew increasingly stale at the turn of the millennium, the music either turning to the rigid forms of death/black metal grinding, Meshuggah-like polyrythms or the more melodic(and predictable) metalcore, there was one band slowly working their way against the stream.

When I first heard the music of Gojira I was at a friend's. He told me he had found the most ridiculously heavy riff and played the second track 'Backbone' off this album. I was instantly blown away by the ferocity that Gojira delivered their music with. It didn't sound like death metal- it was too melodic, it didn't sound like Meshuggah- it was too straight forward, and most importantly it was too complex to be metalcore. This was something new!

Gojiras sound lands somewhere inbetween prog/tech and death metal. It's a distorted soundscape and the guitars almost sound percussively atonal at times. It's heavily syncopated, jeeringly transforming, inspired music. Traveling seamlessly between primal rage and tranquility.

Over the years this album has been growing on me, but as a previous poster stated, this record is one of those you have to be in a certain mindset to enjoy. For some records I'd argue that you can't put a five star rating on something you won't always love from the second you press play, but for this album I think it's different. The only proper comparison I can make is of fine cheese.

Cheese is great; some would even go so far as to say that they love cheese. But you don't ALWAYS want cheese, no matter how delicious it may be. There will be times when you'll think to yourself "I would not care for cheese right now". But does it make the cheese any less worthy of your time? Does it somehow tarnish your overall view of cheese and all the tasty ventures you've had and will have with it? It most certainly will not!

So you see; From Mars to Sirius is like fine cheese. You'll listen to the album and think to yourself "I'm traveling through the cosmos on the back of these whales. I understand now a deeper sense of harmony. A purer vocalization of all that is good in music! This is awesome!" But after a while you will be thinking in the lines of "These whales take forever and my behind is staring to ache. I want off and find some more comfortable ground. Back to earth!"

My point is: This album is fantastic. You won't find another of its kind. It's soft and it's hard. It's loud and it's quiet. But perhaps most importantly it's earnest music with great depth and musicianship. It's a complex piece of music that you might find yourself growing tired of at times. But trust me; you'll come back for more eventually.


Report this review (#245560)
Posted Wednesday, October 21, 2009 | Review Permalink
Prog Metal Team
3 stars This is probably a great album if you're into this sort of head-banging music. Personally I've never been a fan of straight forward metal song structures with predictable guitar patterns. This basically means that From Mars to Sirius doesn't really work for me. The solid production combined with the drummers constant use of double pedal and growling vocals creates the illusion of heavy sound. When in fact Gojira doesn't reach the heaviness nor technicality of bands like Meshuggah, Unexpect or even Between The Buried And Me!

So what about the song writing? In most cases it works well and I like the atmospheric sections quite a bit although the basic song structures on the majority of the tracks creates predictability which brings the album down a notch in my book. In fact I believe that the compositions here are much more of a Progressive Metal nature than Tech/Extreme Prog Metal have it not been for the three elements that I've mentioned.

Still there were some elements, like the overall atmosphere, that made me interested in Gojira so I will probably try to listen to The Way of All Flesh or any of their future releases once I'll get around to it. Who knows, I might even change my opinion about this release after that!

***** star songs: From Mars (2:24)

**** star songs: Backbone (4:18) From the Sky (5:48) Unicorn (2:09) The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe (3:57) Flying Whales (7:44) World To Come (6:52) To Sirius (5:37) Global Warming (7:50)

*** star songs: Ocean Planet (5:32) Where Dragons Fall (6:54) In The Wilderness (7:47)

Report this review (#263277)
Posted Friday, January 29, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is the album where i think Gojira really found, crafted and perfected their sound, and boy is it a beauty.. This album is just so powerfull and heavy, from the opening track OCEAN PLANET you know your in for one tech-death prog rollercoaster ride. Their are also some cool instrumental 'chill out' parts througout the album like UNICORN and FROM MARS that only make the heavier tracks seem all the more heavy and awsome, other highlights for me include the epic WHERE DRAGONS FALL, THE HEAVIEST MATTER OF THE UNIVERSE, WORLD TO COME and the final track GLOBAL WARMING with its complex time signatures and awsome hypnotic tapping riff. This is a must buy for fans of Tool, Mushuggah or any fans of metal really, of course its not completly perfect but the good makes up for the bad points, none of which are really worth mentioning as they are few and rare, but id say that this is about as close to perfect Gojira could possibly make, a worthwhile buy :)

Ocean Planet - 10/10 Backbone - 10/10 From the Sky - 10/10 Unicorn - 9/10 Where Dragons Fall - 10/10 The Heaviest Matter of the Universe - 10/10 Flying Whales - 8/10 In the Wilderness - 8/10 World to Come - 10/10 From Mars - 9/10 To Sirius - 8/10 Global Warming - 10/10

MY CONCLUSION? as i said this maybe the closest thing to perfect you may ever get from this band, check it out, you wont be dissipointed.

Report this review (#289872)
Posted Saturday, July 10, 2010 | Review Permalink
Conor Fynes
4 stars 'From Mars To Sirius' - Gojira (8/10)

Without a doubt one of the heaviest metal bands in the progressive scene nowadays, France's premier extreme quartet Gojira's real breakthrough was this album; the conceptually geared 'From Mars To Sirius'. Drawing inspiration and their topic of interest from the looming modern problem of ecological preservation, Gojira has developed their death metal sound into something with a much grander scope. While the band's next release 'The Way Of All Flesh' would improve and further develop upon the sound of Gojira, 'From Mars To Sirius' stands as being a landmark in French metal, and will be for decades to come.

While the crushing guitar and rhythm sound here could be compared to the tumultuous origins of the universe, Gojira manages to harness such a ferocious sound and channel it into something that is moreoften memorable and impressive than not. With the opening behemoth 'Ocean Planet' showing little hesitation to jump into the trademark primordial riffage that drives throughout most of the album. To give a much fresher sound to the music however, there are plenty of more moderate moments, and atmospheric soundscapes behind the main work, that give 'From Mars To Sirius' a stylistic similarity to some of Devin Townsend (of Strapping Young Lad)'s career work.

Dealing with a profound real-world topic through some aspects of fantasy, Gojira's sludgy take on 'From Mars To Sirius' is filled with small details in the production, but is quite straightfoward in terms of it's sound and uniformity, especially when compared to things Gojira have achieved after this point. While the style is done very well, some tricks (such as making the guitar squeal in between breakdowns) are a bit overdone. The songwriting here and delivery are still for the most part, quite excellent. Despite being quite inventive with the way they craft the music, there are still many songs that fit the anger and call for change into as little as five minutes.

As has been said before, the album does sound quite similar throughout, giving the album a nice flow, although some unexpected moments of variety would have been the strong songwriting here even better. The only song that does not stand out as being excellent is 'In The Wilderness,' which while engaging enough, lacks any ideas that distinguish it as a song of it's own. However, this album from the French death metallers is surprisingly consistent, and with time, I would imagine that popular appreciation for this piece will only serve to grow in the metal community.

Report this review (#380757)
Posted Saturday, January 15, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars 8/10

"From Mars To Sirius" is Gojira's best release so far: a modern Death Metal classic.

Gojira are one of the main Progressive Death Metal acts of the new millennium also because of 'From Mars To Sirius', the extraordinary third album. This French band had been active for nine years before this release, but it is known that great albums take time and a certain level of maturity.

Compared to earlier albums, 'From Mars To Sirius' has a much rougher production: everything sounds incredibly large, wide, and spacey in this album, contrasting the tight compositions of the early days. Even the technical point of view has toned down quite a bit, in favor of a more sludgy take on Death Metal: the guitars are strongly reminiscent of bands like Mastodon, Neurosis, or Isis. But the typical Gojira vocals, by Joe Duplianter, never leave the stage, and still give that touch that brings together all releases from the band.

The album presents a bunch of solid, well-written and executed songs that, put together, maintain a strongly consistent level throughout the entire hour this albums lasts: the more famous, classic Gojira songs like the Post-Metal vibes of 'Flying Whales', the fiercely dramatic guitar tapping of 'Global Warming', or the energetic 'From The Sky' are stuck into the imaginary collective of modern Death Metal. But the other songs present here are not less powerful: 'Ocean Planet', the album's opener, is an almost devastatingly executed song with one of the sludgiest riffs of the entire LP, 'World To Come' and 'Oceanbone' simple songs with excellent riffs and songwriting. The more technical, thrashy moments are still present here and there, like in 'The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe', one of the most intense songs Gojira has ever created.

An album with little imperfections, with a tremendously engaging flow, and with a consistent high level of execution, 'From Mars to Sirius' shows all of Gojra's talent, and remains a key album for Progressive Death Metal.

Report this review (#733207)
Posted Thursday, April 19, 2012 | Review Permalink
3 stars Gojira are something of an anomaly in the metal world; they've influenced countless new extreme metal bands in their wake, and yet very few artists have been able to successfully replicate their style. To the newcomers of the band, they may initially come off as Meshuggah with a more emotional (and of course environmental, when referring to the lyrics) side to them. While this can be true at times, the ambient interludes (such as "Torii" or "The Silver Cord") and moments that showcase the brutality of their classic death metal roots suggest more influences beneath the surface. Additionally, each album has its own personality and sound: Terra Incognita was more akin to the band's demos, containing more full-on death metal than their later releases; The Link had both a more tribal and progressive feel; The Way of All Flesh is extremely grim and focuses on the relationship between life and death; L'Enfant Sauvage has a tighter sound and the songs are less drawn-out. So where does From Mars to Sirius fit in? Well, it's a giant sprawling mess of a record, that's for sure.

The longest album by the band at this point, From Mars to Sirius focuses on longer compositions while increasing the guitar distortion and heaviness to the highest degree. Also worth mentioning is this record's special attention to an environmental message, even going as far as making an album cover that looks eerily similar to the logo of the organization Sea Shepherd, which aims to preserve marine life. The typical Gojira trademarks are all present; you've got the low-tuned chugs, a nice variety of tempos, and melodic guitar lines that cut through the wall of distortion. Unfortunately though, the record also emphasizes one of the band's trademarks a little too much: the repetition. Repetition can be fine if it's executed tastefully, but here it just sounds like it was incorporated to fill up the running time. While songs such as the aptly titled "The Heaviest Matter of the Universe" and the simultaneously melodic and harsh opener "Ocean Planet" do an efficient job of trimming the fat, songs like "Global Warming" and especially "Where Dragons Dwell" honestly don't. The latter is seven minutes long, but while the first half holds a nice sludgy groove with some nice vocal variety, the second half is the same riff repeated... over and over and over and over until it fades out. Other songs are guilty of this as well, and it doesn't enhance them in any way. There aren't any subtle changes in the songwriting except for a few different drum fills here and there or some vocal shouts, so there isn't much to invest in.

Luckily the album's strengths do make up for this, if barely. The soft interlude "Unicorn" is a well-paced break from the constant heaviness, and the songs that combine heaviness and frequent instances of melody (like "Ocean Planet" or "Flying Whales") balance the two elements very nicely. "Flying Whales" is certainly a standout in general, with a peaceful clean-guitar interlude setting the stage for the bludgeoning distortion and overall intensity that follows. In fact, "In the Wilderness" ends up being a great follow-up as well, despite returning to the one-dimensional heaviness and having an overly long ending. Luckily, the chromatic riffs and higher-pitched vocals during the chorus are effective and evoke a sense of chaos, saving the tune from the same fate as some of the other ones on here. The lyricism is well-done too; while the environmental message can occasionally be a bit overbearing, it's evident that the band really care about their cause and put a lot of thought into the poetry being sung (or growled/screamed) here. In songs like "Flying Whales" or "Where Dragons Dwell," fantasy themes indirectly provide symbolism related to the environmental theme and are sung with just the right amount of conviction.

There's nothing really terrible about From Mars to Sirius, but it really would have benefited from being pared down. Many of the songs feel a bit directionless because of weak, unnecessarily repetitive endings and their overall length. The album constantly seems to tread the fault line between being resonant and being completely uninteresting. While not a bad record by any means, I can unfortunately call it the band's worst.

(Originally published on Sputnikmusic)

Report this review (#1445849)
Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2015 | Review Permalink
5 stars 4.7/5 an excellent metal album, great vocals, wow guitar moments, dirty bass riffs and an exceptional drummer (rounded to a 5). One of Gojira's greatest works.

Gojira have always surprised me with their albums, from Mars to Sirius to me, was a journey of whales, oceanplanets, space and planet exploration to global warming. I was instantly hooked. This is an album with a huge song list of metal and I loved every one of them. Yet, if I choose a favorite it would be Global Warming Flying whales, which was the epitome of this exceptional album.

I do not know what to say other than everyone must listen to this album.

Report this review (#2023158)
Posted Saturday, September 8, 2018 | Review Permalink
Prog Metal Team
4 stars When listening to this album, my immediate thoughts revolve around this album's extremely heavy, groove metal style, amplified by the incredible production. Each song is packed with memorable riffs and a perfect blend of solid groove perfect for headbanging and furious transitions and climaxes, further improved by the production making everything sound even bigger and more spacious, providing a unique quality to them that I feel can't be replicated by many bands. From Mars To Sirius expands on the previous 2 albums by the band, toning down the extremely raw sound the debut brought forth, and the more atmospheric stuff found on The Link, making a more progressive, complex album that still maintains a lot of the previous qualities.

The intro to Ocean Planet conveys the album effectively, with ambient whale noises leading into heavy, droning guitar chords with intense, powerful drumming creating a wall of sound with the only semblance of melody coming from Joe Duplantier's vocals. I find the vocals to be really great in general, having the rough qualities of screaming while still being properly sung to allow some melody. Backbone manages to be even better, coming in with a simple, yet killer riff that keeps switching between groove and instrumental insanity, all culminating in an utter freakout after the first minute that just keeps going on and on, backed up with a solid blast beat. This is definitely one of the better songs on the album, as the main riff sounds so good, and the instrumental interludes are nothing short of incredible. The album continues in a similar fashion, having an extremely unified, groovy, spacey sound. Notable songs are From The Sky, which has a more powerful, epic feel to it, especially the epic chorus and Unicorn, which is absolutely beautiful and enjoyable despite being a minute long interlude.

The best songs on the album however are undoubtedly The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe and Flying Whales. The former starts off guns blazing with a downright labyrinthine riff that never seems to slow down, even when it becomes more traditional in nature, it's still absolutely brutal, all culminating into one of the few uses of clean vocals in the entire album, slowly building in intensity until it completely explodes, leading straight into what I consider to be one of the greatest extreme metal songs out there. Flying Whales begins with a simple, light, yet deeply atmospheric riff, using light guitar tones to set the stage for what's to come. The other elements are slowly introduced, a simple drumbeat combined with a light bassline and whale noises throughout. I love the way this continues for over two minutes, sounding incredible throughout, before it slows down, cuts out, and then a semblance of metal comes in the form of layered guitars in the back that then burst in with an incredibly heavy riff that you'd be very talented to not want to start headbanging to. Not a moment of this song feels wasted or misused, continuing the single riff for quite a while, only breaking it up with with a buildup to the explosion of "Now I can see the whales", all before it becomes chaotic, introducing riff after riff, each more impressive than the last, never letting the listener have a moment of reprieve until the very end, making an absolutely perfect song in every respect.

However, despite the near perfect first side of the album, past Flying Whales does drop off a bit, partially because the listener will be recovering from the rush that the song gave them, but also just because the album has a very set sound that never really varies too much. World To Come is definitely my least favourite song here, as their attempt to have a more melodic song here ends up missing its mark quite considerably and sounding very lifeless. Fortunately, the other attempt of making a more melodic song works absolute wonders, as Global Warming closes off the album in a breathtaking fashion, using a fadeout to absolutely amazing effect and being so emotional.

It's honestly quite unfortunate that the rest of the songs on this side, while definitely not being bad for the most part, just don't sound interesting after already listening to the previous 40 minutes of similar sounding music, leading to it becoming somewhat exhausting. Overall, while I really do love this album in many respects, I believe it should have been cut down by quite a bit. Despite this, the high points are undoubtedly incredible, and I would definitely recommend this album to those who like groove metal and incredibly atmospheric, spacey, ultimately gigantic sounding songs, and find this a good entry point into the band.

Best songs: Backbone, The Heaviest Matter of the Universe, Global Warming, FLying Whales (this one especially)

Weakest songs: World To Come

Verdict: I can't think of listening to an album quite so massive as this one. The majority of riffs are ewual parts spine crushing and awesome, and no matter how many times I listen to it, that production and overall sound is always what impresses me the most about the band. While it can drag in places, I have little doubt in my mind that this is an absolutely great album.

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Posted Saturday, March 23, 2019 | Review Permalink

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