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Audio'm Godzilla album cover
4.09 | 38 ratings | 4 reviews | 34% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2022

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Godzilla (43:00)

Total Time 43:00

Line-up / Musicians

- Marco Fabbri / drums
- Michel Cayuela / keyboards
- Mathieu Havart / keyboards
- Simon Segura / bass, guitars
- Gary Haguenauer / lead guitar
- Dominique Olmo / rhythm guitar
- Emmanuelle Olmo-Cayuela / vocals

Releases information

Format: CD, Digital
September 8, 2022

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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AUDIO'M Godzilla ratings distribution

(38 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(34%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(29%)
Good, but non-essential (13%)
Collectors/fans only (24%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

AUDIO'M Godzilla reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars An eclectic band from the South of France (near the Spanish border) here comes up with their sophomore release after 2016's well-acclaimed self-titled debut.

1. "Godzilla" (43:00) opening with Mellotron-drenched heaviness like Italy's DAAL, the vocals of Emmanuelle Olmo-Cayuela are, I'm afraid, an acquired taste--something my ears and brain have failed to acquire (much less tolerate) successfully after four listens. She has such an odd range and styling for the female lead vocalist--and she seems to be constantly struggling to stay on pitch. Nice acoustic guitar work in the pastoral section but nothing very virtuosic, only a progression of arpeggiate chords all played with the same tinger-picked pattern and tempo, but I like the switch from major to minor keys--and Emmanuelle's choices of melody during this section. At 5:28 we are off and running in a more abrasive, DAAL-like passage with Emmanuelle stretching her voice both dynamically and in pitch (though I like the Eliana Valenzuela [of Chilean band Homínido] power she projects here). A brief quiet down passage with Manu's whispers is followed by a section that contains Manu's worst vocal passages. Some cool ideas she just doesn't have the control to pull them off. I love the instrumental palette of the instrumental tenth minute--probably my favorite part of the suite. The next motif is in a bit of an odd time signature and founded in a powerful church organ but then transitions into a brief guitar power chord bridge to a smoother theme. By this point (approaching the one-third mark) the poor drum sound is really starting to grate on me. The move to front of the chunkier jazz-funk bass is cool, though. In the fifteenth minute two guitars solo in their own worlds over the jazz-funk theme. At 15:25 everything stops for pipe organ and Manu to transition us to a brief cinematic guitar solo over "harp", but then we return to a previous theme for a short bit before interesting cinematic "old time" organ transfers us to a more classic four chord blues rock progression over which organ and guitar solo in an URIAH HEEP/early YES kind of way. Manu's regurgitating of the previously established dominant melody takes us out of this and into an eerie doldrums waiting area. Then, at 20:13 guitar and clavichord/organ take us into a kind of IL BALLETTO DI BRONZO passage of psychological frenzy before we are suddenly dropped into a rather idyllic and quite melodic fully-formed ostinato-based motif that borrows quite openly from MIKE OLDFIELD's Incantations from the end of the 20th minute through the 24th minutes we are firmly anchored in that groove--though there is a shift at 23:03 into a bit of a different Oldfield motif--over which Manu sings (almost in an uncanny imitation of the great MADDY PRIOR from Oldfield's original recordings of the album). Even with tempo and instrumental palette changes over the successive minutes, the music still bears quite a striking resemblance to several of Mike Oldfield's 1970s works or themes--including the guitar tones selected for the lead guitar and keys in the 29th minute. Godzilla is still in the cave at the 30-minute mark, though he is here being hailed as the "Messiah." The alternating acoustic guitar pastoral passages and electric guitar-dominated themes are still well within the Oldfield catalog of referents until finally a new GENESIS-like motif is introduced a the 32-minute mark. Another slow, pastoral section in the 36th minute is extinguished in the second half of the 37th minute by a bombastic and melodic motif elevated by Emmanuelle's spirited vocalise. While the music is delightfully complex in its many sudden twists and turns as well in its recapitulations of several recurrent themes, the production feels weak, the vocalist is challenged (despite her obvious confidence and bravery), the subject matter of questionable interest or accuracy, and many of the motifs "incomplete." If there is one other high point in the album's existence, it is for the feeling of a wonderfully cohesive band working together with all their hearts on this project. (75/85)

Total Time 43:00

I must admit, the origin story purported by this band/in this album is rather odd--taking over 28 minutes to hatch, grow up, and emerge from his cave home. I'm guessing that this piece of music is meant to only present us with the birth, development, and debutante of the "messiah" monster, not really getting into his mischief and mayhem. Does that mean we should be expecting further installments of the story of the King of the Monsters from this band in the future? Though the song's opening notes seem to indicate an adherence to the heaviness of the original film soundtrack themes, this does not remain so as the song in the second half becomes more like a celebratory homage to early Mike Oldfield and Genesis's "Supper's Ready." Also, the sound engineering (overall mix, drum sound, and compressed feeling of all the instruments' tracks) is what I'd call substandard--as if it was accomplished with less-than top-notch equipment.

B+/four stars; an excellently rendered prog epic that, unfortunately, contains room for improvement. I hope that future projects of this band, should they choose to stay together, might include better engineering and/or mixing facilities (or personnel) while retaining their excellent spirit of adventure and confidence.

Review by siLLy puPPy
4 stars Coming from the southern Occitan region of France, the band AUDIO'M has been quite ambitious in its pursuit of reaching the pinnacle of progressive rock right from the very start. Take the band's name for example which is a clever amalgamation of the word "audio" with the unlikely pairing "oidium, a thin-wailed spore that is better known as a vineyard disease! Add to that with the band's self-titled debut that emerged in 2016, AUDIO'M featured a staggering ten vocalists and musicians that constructed a larger than life sound but just as soon as the band hit the prog scene seemed to fall into silence. 
Well that quiet time has ceased and in 2022 the band which has been whittled down to a mere seven members has returned with a most ambitious sophomore release titled GODZILLA which showcases a retro prog vibe of the golden age with ample doses of rock, folk, jazz and even baroque music. This time around the band has opted to go for the prog jugular by crafting a single 43 1/2 minute track! No small undertaking here. The entire album may be a mere single track but is broken down into three suits but what a track it is! The first suite is titled "Little Boy" followed by "Gaia" and "The Wake."

GODZILLA revolves around a fable that is told on three albums. This release is only the first but the premises originate on the last track of the debut album, "Friend-less-R" which began the tale of a firebird / phoenix. The story narrates the tale of a phoenix egg that hatches after the explosion of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and upon leaving the scene the hatchling sees the plane that delivered the fatal goods and thinks its his mother. The entire trilogy revolves around this fledgling phoenix searching the world for his perceived mother and his encounters with various mythological creatures and other trials of life. In short this is an ecological lesson set in super-prog prose. How's that for prog excess? Love it!

You don't have to be up on nerdy lyrical concepts to appreciate this fine release however. I usually ignore such storylines and am in it for the music itself. GODZILLA does not disappoint. This single track album experience delivers a nice mix of progressive rock workouts laid out in a 43 1/2 minute stream of consciousness. The track pretty much jumps right into the lyrical presentation with lead singer Emmanuelle Olmo-Cayuela belting out her vocal lines. Honestly i mistook her for a man given that she's a dead ringer for Gnidrolog's Colin Goldring. Although i missed this connection on the first album, the folky parts of AUDIO'M sound just like Gnidrolog in the modern era and that is NOT a bad thing.

Despite comprising a single track as an album experience, GODZILLA does not get bogged down in tedium. While easily digestible melodic motifs are what reel you in and keep you hooked, there are many prog workouts that take this into the world of true complexity. The music is soulful and intricate but never strays from its mission of narrating the tale. There is a brief moment of silence in the middle that effectively divides the album in two but there are actually three suites. The music ranges from lush pastoral progressive folk to fully fueled heavier rock with an active guitar presence, a bantering bass and drumming freneticism. All the musicians are quite skilled and conspire to create a larger sum of the parts.

This gargantuan rock opera certainly could be classified as retro prog as it tackles many styles of classic influences. Primarily existing in the symphonic prog world with crafty atmospheric backdrops and active key stabs tinkling intricate melodies and virtuosity, GODZILLA brings classic Camel, Genesis, Kansas and Focus to mind as well as some of the tricks of the trade from the Italian symphonic prog scene. Heavier passages occur but once again i cannot help but think of Gnidrolog's "Lake Lake" album as the key reference for comparison as even the heavier parts evoke that Goldring vocal style. The music is much denser and complex than anything Gnidrolog conjured up on that album so it's really a reference point only.

While two track albums have been fairly common in prog history, single track albums have been much rarer. I can only think of a few. Jethro Tull's "A Passion Play," Al-BIrd's "Sodom & Gomorra XXI - Progressive Symphonic Poem," a few Buckethead Pikes, Cheer-Accident's "Trading Balloons," Daal's "Navels Falling Into A Living Origami," a few Devil Doll albums, Edge of Sanity's "Crimson" and "Crimson II," Green Carnation's "Light Of Day, Day Of Darkness," well you get the point. Such ambitious album long tracks have to pack an album's worth of ideas into its lengthy run and there's where i feel GODZILLA falls a little short. The track is excellent as a continuous listening experience but seems to lack enough variety to warrant its running time. Another factor that brings this down a tad bit is the fact that Emannuelle Olmo-Cayuela as competent as she is doesn't have a wide vocal range which would expand this album's appeal a bit.

Overall i may not find the album perfect but this is still one of my favorite albums of 2022 as the musical aspects are simply amazing and although i would have loved to hear more adventurous deviations from the musical procession that seems fairly uniform, i am more than impressed by the number of variations the band has eked out from more or less a basic theme. This is a fine accomplishment indeed and only the first of the three trilogies so that means there are two more albums in the horizon. I'm confident this band will expand and develop its sound into ever more nooks and crannies of the prog world. This is an excellent first installment of this ambitious project and not one to be missed. For those who love crazy complex and overweening prog then this was made for you! Definitely one that requires a few attentive listening sessions but the music continues to deliver time and time again. A huge hit for this French group. AUDIO'M is here to stay!

Latest members reviews

5 stars With this new project, Audio M tends to make its place among the most original bands in contemporary progressive rock. This opus is a true homogeneous suite. It's not a simple succession of songs linked more or less skilfully and having no other link than to tell one story. Here, the cohesion of the ... (read more)

Report this review (#2944388) | Posted by Kjarks | Tuesday, August 8, 2023 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Before us is a very strong and original work. It is the second album of the French prog band Audio'm. Six years after their debut, the band presents a concept consisting of one mega track lasting 43 minutes. So, before us is a very complex undertaking that was executed and presented in a very high-q ... (read more)

Report this review (#2785456) | Posted by Jean Portal | Friday, August 19, 2022 | Review Permanlink

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