Gojira’s 20-year musical endeavor has seen great transformation in their artistic ability and band integrity. From the Death Metal qualities of Terra Incognita, to the beautiful chaos that is Magma, we can only imagine what the band’s seventh studio release, Fortitude, will add to their ever-expanding musical pallet.
Gojira have already treated us with five of the eleven tracks which make up Fortitude, and we, the people, have responded with our horns in the air.
Now that Fortitude has been unleashed into the world, let’s take a look into what Gojira have been cooking up for us.
Born For One Thing
Born For One Thing introduces listeners to Fortitude with a harmonic climb dancing above Mario Duplantier’s 6/4-kick-snare-mind-f*ck, right before the tune launches into a concoction of wailing guitars, nasty vocals and chunky rhythms.
One thing you will notice throughout Fortitude is that the sing-a-long factor has been raised a significant amount, compared to previous releases. You’ll find your Neighbours's chanting along “We were born for one thing, tame the greatest thing of all” with you, as those little hair follicles in your ears reduce to powder. In saying that, please look after your ears, and refrain from engaging in high-volume music listening.
With a complimenting music video expressing the cultural and political hardship endured by the traditional peoples of the Amazon rainforest, as well as the harsh reality of deforestation throughout the area, Gojira’s second track, Amazonia, is a powerful political statement that protests corporate greed and human rights violations. The use of indigenous instruments throughout the song creates a sense of locality, it draws us into the world of Amazonia. This unique addition to the track really makes it stand out amongst the band's previous work.
Gojira - Amazonia [OFFICIAL VIDEO]
3. Another World
A strong single to tease a new album. Another World has it all, solid riffage, catchy lyrics, gorgeous ambient outro, even the ol’ Gojira whammy sweep! Simple, yet effective. Just like this description.
Gojira - Another World [OFFICIAL VIDEO]
4. Hold On
Similar to what we’ve already heard in The Chant, Hold On opens with a trance-like vocal harmony, before ripping into a solid, bouncy intro. The first 1.40min follows an orchestral trajectory which is significant to what the band usually writes but fits perfectly. Joe Duplantier’s vocal melody seems to glide over the first few verses and choruses, and within no time we find ourselves submerged in Duplantier’s iconic guitar tapping!
Gojira - Hold On [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
5. New Found
Tell you what, it takes some ball to use a whammy pedal throughout a heavy riff, but goddamn, the Gojira boys have it down pat. New Found may deceive you for being somewhat chill for a Gojira tune, but don’t get too complacent - those half-time grooves and chunky riffs will come out of nowhere on a golden platter. Just for you.
Gojira - New Found [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
How can someone not love an interlude to a song!? If you managed to catch the release of The Chant before the record came out, you know exactly where this track is going. Fortitude’s raw, acoustic tone provides a wonderful touch to the listening experience of The Chant, as well as the album in general!
Gojira - Fortitude [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
7. The Chant
Yes, your ears do not deceive you! That is indeed a guitar solo! If you haven’t already picked up on it, The Chant draws stylistic technique from its older sibling, The Shooting Star, and is a beautiful intermission from the destruction that preceded. Although it’s rawness and rhythmic minimalism, The Chant doesn’t disappoint in capturing our attention.
With a melodic chant guiding us through the song (which in all honesty will be a spectacular live moment...you know we’re all thinking it), and a soulful guitar solo ushering us into the next track, The Chant is an excellent example to convey Gojira’s dynamic songwriting abilities.
Gojira - The Chant [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
And now we have chaos. If those pick scrapes don’t make your knees shake, then you’re listening to it wrong! It’s as though Sphinx jumped straight off The Way Of All Flesh and into this cracker of an album! Duplantier’s low growls seem to rip and tear through the mix and mending it back together with his soaring melodies.
Gojira - Sphinx [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
9. Into The Storm
Mario Duplantier never fails to impress us with the ridiculousness that is his drumming. Bursting into the song with his four limbs running off to Sweden and joining Meshuggah, Duplantier provides listeners with a few bars to sort out our internal metronomes, before jumping into the chuggy first verse. Like its fellow comrades on the album, Born For One Thing and Another World, Into The Storm meets Fortitude’s sing-a-long factor, with a chorus that will unite Mars and Sirius.
Gojira - Into The Storm [LYRIC VIDEO]
10. The Trials
By this point of the album, we’re wondering where Gojira will take us next. The Trial’s almost progressive, dream-like nature is no shock to us, as we’ve heard Gojira compose tracks of similar character. As the second last track on the record, we can't help but expect the band to unleash a destructive finale for us all.
Gojira - The Trails [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
11. The Grind
GRIIIIIIIIND! The Grind is the perfect ending for the metal release we’ve all been waiting for. A lethal concoction of blast-beats and groove, total riffage, and a filthy bass tone, this track has the power to put a smile on the Gojira fans who “like their old stuff”! With an intro that sonically embodies a seizure and a contrasting outro that will either bring a tear to your eye or to a standing ovation, we think The Grind is the perfect way to conclude listening to Fortitude.
Gojira - Grind [OFFICIAL AUDIO]
What an astounding album this is for Gojira! Australia sends our biggest “Onya mate!” to the band and cheers to the survival of Heavy Metal through bands like this. Now that the wait is over, and Fortitude is EVERYWHERE, let’s cross our fingers and hope that Gojira have some dates in mind to come and visit us! And if you haven’t yet listened to the record... DO IT NOW!
By the way, if you haven't seen our interview with Mario Duplantier, you can check it out below!
Interview with Gojira's Mario Duplantier
Listen to Fortitude now.