Godspeed You! Black Emperor the Montreal collective, masters of Quebec post-rock returns. The first new recordings in a decade.
Featuring two twenty-minute slabs of epic instrumental rock music and two six-and-a-half minute drones, ‘ALLELUJAH! DON’T BEND! ASCEND! provides soaring, shining proof of the band’s powerful return to form. Ten years after Yanqui U.X.O. and while the band began a world tour .
Created in 1994 by Efrim Menuck and Mauro Pezzente, Godspeed You Black Emperor! takes its name from a Japanese documentary in black and white called God Speed You! Black Emperor of Mitsuo Yanagimachi describing the exploits of a biker gang, the Black Emperors. That same year, the band self-produced All Lights Fucked on the Hairy Amp Drooling, a music cassette limited to only 33 copies.
Two members initially, the group spent a fortnight in the period 1995-1998. During the latter, in 1997, label Constellation Records, the band recorded a f ♯ ♯ ∞, released in vinyl limited edition of 500 copies; Kranky reissued the following year on CD with several modifications.
It was only in 1999 with the release of Slow Riot for New Zero Kanada, released in vinyl and CD on the same model (but on two different labels that their previous production) that the group came out of anonymity, with the support the Wire and John Peel, and particularly after the famous British magazine cover of NME. It is also from this time that the group was reduced to its current nine members after the departure during the 1998 tour of Mike Moya and its replacement by Roger Tellier-Craig.
After ten years of silence discography with the release of powerful and stormy ‘Allelujah! Do not Bend! Ascend!, Echo demonstrations that have shaken their hometown of Montreal in the spring, the eight musicians still reject outright the tune of the music industry.
Godspeed already returned to the scene since 2010, does not reappear today for money or to get to see – (the group still refuses photos, and the image above is taken from a 16mm film screened at concerts, directed by Karl Lemieux, ninth member of the collective.
We are constantly under tension, clinging to their captivating melodies as we follow a procession behind the thunder growling electric guitars.
The new album presents the fruits of that labor: evolved and definitive versions of two huge compositions previously known to fans as “Albanian” and “Gamelan”, now properly titled as “MLADIC” and “WE DRIFT LIKE WORRIED FIRE” respectively. Accompanied by the new drones (stitched into the album sequence on CD; cut separately on their own 7″ for the LP version), GYBE have offered up a fifth album that is as absolutely vital, virulent, honest and heavy as anything in their discography.
You can listen to “ Mladic ” here:
and also watch their performance on Gathering Storm Live @ L’Olympia Montreal, filmed by”We are Postrock”: