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Jucifer L'Autrichienne

Jucifer - L'Autrichienne
01. Blackpowder
02. Thermidor
03. To Earth
04. Deficit
05. Champ de Mars
06. Fall of the Bastille
07. To the End
08. Armada
09. L'Autrichienne
10. Behind Every Great Man
11. October
12. Birds of a Feather
13. Traitors
14. The Law of Suspects
15. Noyade
16. The Mountain
17. Window (Where the Sea Falls Forever)
18. Fleur de Lis
19. Procession a la Guillotine
20. Coma
21. The Assembly
2008 Relapse Records

Reviewed by: Nick   //   Published: 4/25/2008

With 2006's release of If Thine Enemy Hunger, Jucifer made it obvious that they're easily one of the most inventive acts in modern rock as the pair somehow managed to mix grunge, sludge, and indie rock into a cohesive release. L'Autrichienne is the duo's ambitious follow-up record, and while their trademark mix of thick guitar hooks, forceful drumming and Amber Valentine's beautifully dark vocals is still front and center, they continue to push the musical envelope by bringing even more influences to the table.

The twenty-one song release locks into gear with the grungy, southern rock inspired hooks of "Blackpowder." Simplistic in structure and instantly memorable, the track is instrumental in setting a mood differing from that of If Thine Enemy Hunger's sludgy lead off number. "Thermidor" is L'Autrichienne's first surprise, as quick power violence clicks give a half second of warning before the song reveals its breakneck grindcore style. This isn't to be confused with grind influence, or perhaps grindcore leanings. This is Jucifer laying down thirty seconds of rapid, abrasive riffs, blast beats, and fierce screams. And as if it never happens, the pair dives back into Deadboy and the Elephantmen type guitar work, smooth vocals, and rock melodies in "To Earth." Though the listening audience interested in (or even capable of) appreciating such opposite ends of the musical spectrum might be slim, there is no doubt that Jucifer has crafted a record saturated with creativeness and originality.

And with this many tracks from which to choose, it's not hard to find a lot more exceptional numbers to praise. The disc's title track, a subdued piano-based ballad, showcases soft bass lines and soothing singing. "Birds of a Feather" and "Traitors" might be the disc's strongest pair of back to back tracks, with the former advertising French lyrics over great sludge rock riffs and the latter providing an explosive chorus with cathartic screams. Furthermore, Valentine and Livengood haven't lost their appreciation for slow and heavy, as "The Mountain" and "Procession a la Guillotine" showcase massive doom/sludge riffs with thorough helpings of thick low end.

Almost all of L'Autrichienne is pure listening bliss, as the pair effortlessly strings together a number of seemingly opposing musical styles. But with twenty one tracks clocking in around seventy minutes, a few less songs might have helped the album maintain better momentum. "Armada" feels a bit too plodding in nature and lacks the unbridled heaviness of other sludge-based tracks to make up for it. "Window (Where the Sea Falls Forever)" initially floats a little too close to the female pop rock line to feel connected with a disc as moody and dark as L'Autrichienne. But since this is Jucifer's first stab at a concept album (the tracks combine to focus on French Queen Marie Antoinette), and because of the sheer quantity of stellar moments available on this record, a little long-windedness is excusable. In the end, it's a hair less consistent than If Thine Enemy Hunger, but it's still a great slab of diverse rock tunes.

Bottom Line: Jucifer continues to draw more musical influences into their unique brand of rock and the result is a worthy follow-up record to If Thine Enemy Hunger in L'Autrichienne. The heavy music scene deserves more bands as unrestrained and inventive as Jucifer.

enourmous log_   posted 5/21/2008 6:31:18 AM
uhh...if you had your dck in his mouth wouldn't that make you a gay too? do you f*ck man ass as well and pretend you're not gay? f*cking moron. oh and this band is ok. i really think they're overrated though.
cantfakethepunk_   posted 5/5/2008 8:02:34 PM
if i wanted your opinion i would have taken my dck out your mouth... gay
you're gay_   posted 5/2/2008 7:02:23 PM
Sorry, gay. This band sucks more dcks than your mommy & daddy combined. If I wanted to hear some dck pig yell over some hack's excuse for drumming, I'd f*ck your grandma while listening to Kiss Alive.
cantfakethepunk_   posted 4/28/2008 9:13:03 PM
this band f*cking rules... f*ck haters!!!
g_g_   posted 4/27/2008 10:49:27 AM
much better than the last one, but still no "I Am Destroyer"

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