Foetus - Love review


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Band: Foetus
Album: Love
Release date: July 2005

Disc I [CD]
01. (Not Adam)
02. Mon agonie douce
03. Aladdin Reverse
04. Miracle
05. Don't Want Me Anymore
06. Blessed Evening
07. Pareidolia
08. Thrush [feat. Jennifer Charles]
09. Time Marches On
10. How To Vibrate

Disc II [DVD] [bonus]
01. Blessed Evening
02. (Not Adam)
03. How To Vibrate
04. Mon agonie douce
05. Foetus In Excelsis Corruptus Deluxe - I'll Meet You In Poland Baby
06. Rotoskop - Maria Magdalene [vocals by J.G. Thirlwell)
+ J.G. Thirlwell - The Venture Brothers Trailer #1
+ J.G .Thirlwell - The Venture Brothers Trailer #2
+ J.G. Thirlwell - The Venture Brothers Trailer #3
+ J.G. Thirlwell - The Venture Brothers Trailer #4
+ J.G. Thirlwell - The Venture Brothers Trailer #5
+ A Foetus Life: A Documentary on J.G.Thirlwell Trailer #1
+ The Foetus Symphony Orchestra - A Foetus Life: A Documentary on J.G. Thirlwell Trailer #2

Foetus is in a world of his own and has been there for the last quarter of a century. Although his eccentric style has been vastly influential for dozens of bands (the most notable of which is NIN and the entire industrial-rock genre), JG Thirlwell's music still remains unique and incomparable to anything else out there. With this said, Foetus has run himself into a bit of a dead end by the late 90s but luckily resurfaced again in 2001 with the superb "Flow". "Love" is the first Foetus LP since that time and luckily Thirlwell is still in top form and delivers one of the most interesting albums of 2005.

The term 'cinematic' barely scratches the surface when describing the music on "Love". The humongous symphonic atmospheres created here are simply totally overwhelming and make the listener imagine the visual component that the sound requires. Obviously, this makes listening to "Love" quite the experience. Provided you can get past Thirlwell's (deliberately?) atonal and at times downright irritating vocals, chances are listening to "Love" will take you inside a weird, post-modern film-noir directed by a person on acid. Atmospheres are built and obliterated by harpsichords here and the obligatory femme-fatale even makes a guest appearance in a hilariously off-key duet with the tormented protagonist ("Thrush"). At other times, crazy Frenchmen sing about their agony and abrasive, super-distorted riffs interchange with soft synth washes without any notice, while the climax of this insane film seems to be a deconstructed carnival-punk song. This is just the tip of the iceberg and many listeners will be totally stunned by the depth displayed on this album.

Since "Love" is conceptually a soundtrack to a film that exists in the collective minds of Thirlwell and his listeners, pointing out any particular songs as highlights seems to be a bit of an unfair thing to do. Nevertheless, I simply feel obliged to mention one of the gems that can be found on this record. "Aladdin Reverse" is a song so good that it is difficult to describe. Starting with a slow buildup created by harpsichord sounds, subdued symphonics and Thirlwells acerbic vocals, the song explodes into epic theatrics and tremendous power, only to continue as anthemic industrial rock incorporating pulverizing, corrosive riffs over massive percussion.

Although essentially "Love" is made out of the same basic components that Foetus has been using ever since his debut (industrial rock riffs, demented brass parts, swinging drums, Thirlwell's schizophrenic persona vocals etc), the tremendous cinematic quality of this album is something that this band has never been able to achieve before. Highly recommended to those of us who enjoy adventurous and unique music.


Written on 23.11.2005 by With Metal Storm since 2002, jupitreas has been subjecting the masses to his reviews for quite a while now. He lives in Warsaw, Poland, where he does his best to avoid prosecution for being so cool.

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