Conquerer – Jesu

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Through his four releases as Jesu, Justin Broadrick has faithfully portrayed a band in many ways an anathema to his legendary grindcore outfit, Godflesh. The spacey , synth-laid landscapes he now releases evoke rival British movements of that earlier era, that of shoe gaze and the early tremors of that widest of categorizations, post-rock. This latest album comes even closer than the previous three projects to a shoegazer's take on the other-worldly expanses found in trundling drum beats and all-enveloping guitar distortion, with track times cut down to an average of seven minutes. Melodic vocals and the soft buzz of M83-like synth hooks render the whole project more digestible for the electronic pop set. If post-rock has been done by others, only Broadrick can lay claim to that sublime, undefined landscape of the post-industrial. Having left the gritty brutality of Godflesh on the rusty vine, he's reaping the harvest of a softer, more mature metal.