Grenouer - Lifelong Days

If one were to here the current version of Grenouer compared to when they debuted  back in 1992, they would have to ask themselves if there were hearing the same band. Originally starting out a death/ thrash outfit, Grenouer have progressed over the years to a more industrial/ rock/ groove metal band with some traces of their former work in there, but largely evolved into something bigger. Their latest release, 'Lifelong Days,' is the pinnacle of their evolution, and a surprising jump just barely a year after the release of 'Try,' which was largely more rock industrial oriented. Here, the band touches upon death metal, industrial metal, and even groove metal, sounding a slightly like a cross between Sybreed and Fear Factory and Disarmonia Mundi for a heavy output that is highly enjoyable. The opening track "Indecent Loyalty"  has that gritty, churning guitar tone that makes groove metal popular with the crashing ambiance of industrial metal, but the highlight is clean vocoder vocals which are so overused in todays' pop world, but in metal it is a rare thing to hear, especially when wielded properly. "With No Concern" touches a bit on nu-metal/ rap metal with guest vocals from Igor "Cache." Unforunately this breaks the rhythm of the music as it doesn't sound like it belongs there when all the rest of the album is sheer, heavy chugging and roaring with a few glimpses of clean, electronic vocal work, even though a nod can be given at an effort for experimentalism. "Finding The One" merges industrial metal with rock by throwing in somewhat montonous, but catchy choruses and injecting clean vocals (without electronic tampering) along the harsher ones, so that will appeal to those who enjoyed 'Try.' Then there is "The Unexpected" which is the heaviest track of all with no clean vocals at all and just skull pounding drums with barking vocals among the buzz of the guitars.

Grenouer also dip their hands into the electronica side of industrial metal.  "Patience" includes a heaping amount of BPMs amongst the guitars with almost entirely clean vocals, sometimes vocoded, but mostly trying to sound like Fear Factory with a touch of gothic metal. It serves as a great closer for album before the following industrial techno tracks (both unnamed), but these tracks are so different from their predecessors that it might take a lot of time to get used to them Devoid of almost any 'metal' notion, "Track 12" and "Track 13" sound more like remixes done by The Crystal Method. The music is quiet, lulling beats sounding like a video game soundtrack with the vocals echoing and bouncing all over though electronic harmonization. While these may be a bit alien for what Grenouer fans are used to, it also proves their willingness to experiment further and further with the current genres they are exploring, and they actually sound pretty decent as far as industrial metal is concerned. After ten tracks of pulsing, violent music a bit of electronic ambiance serves as a great 'come down' for listeners, even though some might consider it a waste of time and space on the album when "Patience" was an excellent blend between heavy and soft- the essential balance. Still, overall this album is possibly Grenour's best, though fans of their older work will surely be disappointed they are not making a nod to their earlier days. Even though 'Lifelong Days' was released back in 2008, the band is expected to release a new album to continue their experiments in late 2011.

  1. Indecent Loyalty
  2. Addicted To You
  3. Taken Off The List
  4. With No Concern
  5. Away From Now
  6. Finding The One
  7. Off The Backs Of Others
  8. The Unexpected
  9. Employed Beggar
  10. Re-Active
  11. Patience
  12. Track 12
  13. Track 13