Energetic post-rock, but with an electronica edge and plenty of flair, Jean Jean teased me with their album teaser late last year but with Froidpierre finally released, I can confirm it’s an epic rock odyssey to undertake.
The signal of its epic sound kicks off with the amazing “Konichiwa” that moves from rumbling guitars to massive sounding space rock with shoegaze qualities as the electric guitars and synths blast into your ears. It’s the kind of song you’d imagine in a space rocket take off sequence and I absolutely love it. You can’t not be fully pumped up after listening to it. After we take off “Aozora”, Japanese for blue sky, is a fantastic musical interpretation of that idea. The chugging fast-paced chords, huge tom drums and the way Jean Jean are able to flick elegantly but at pace between motifs and styles will wow you. It culminates in a full-on rush of sound to the ear like you’re hitting the speed of sound and the world is blasting pass you on either side. When done properly, this kind of theatrical rock can stir all your feels and emotions and this is bang on.
“Tensor Field” is a twitchy synth-rock track that plays around with quick, cute string plucks on the electric guitar for the first half before transitioning to a techno rock finale that builds and builds to an organ, drum, bass and keyboard assault on your senses. It’s a simple track but one that is all about the climb and build up over its 6 minutes. “Celjabinsk” is far more industrial and plays with heavy drums and echoing clangs of guitars and organs. It pairs up beautifully with “Anada” which is more melodic and structured in its attack – but just as ferocious as it spasms and bursts with extreme bouts of happiness between segments of quietness.
“Limerence” brings us into the home stretch with the most literal track of post-rock on the album. It’s lush bass and guitar jangles sound great on the ear and when mixed with lilting 80’s synth voices it all comes together beautifully. Title track “Froidpierre” works as a darker version of the previous track, more industrial, guttural and brooding. The percussion here really sells the anger and desperate feeling the track contains. It feels like the last gasp in a space battle before “Event Horizon” see’s us explode into our final destination with a huge post-rock fanfare. It’s a joyous track that treats us to every step of the climb we’ve experienced and rounds off the album perfectly.
“Froidpierre” is a sci-fi films dream soundtrack and it’s one you’ll want to have on repeat over and over again. It’s one of the best examples of post-rock where tracks are under five minutes and not so self-indulgent that you have to deal with four-minute build-ups to another 4 minutes of the same chord structure thrashing out. This is what those soundtracks do, in a compact and more accessible format – all I salute jean Jean for their prowess.
Recommended track: Konichiwa