The French have been known for their jazz and classical contributions in the past and have lately been rolling out some great rock and metal with the likes of Gojira and Abrahma. I've seen them come out with awesome post-hardcore in the past, namely in the guise of Sna-Fu Grandes Désordre Orchestre, who have been paving the way for high-octane raw might on French stages since 2005. That said, despite an onslaught of contenders, there seems to have been a fallow period on the French hardcore platform of truly standout bands. Until now. Until Good Morning Bleeding City's Complete Omnivore.
As soon as the muted bassline rolls in, you know you're in for a treat. Even though it lays the groundwork for a pacey punk riff to kick in, you still manage to be surprised when the whole band explodes into a raw post-hardcore hook. Catchy, yes, but definitely no punches pulled. As it simmers down again the vocals remain as harsh and strong as ever, before it all descends into furious mathcophany. Despite the fact that the adrenaline stays surging throughout, GMBC manage to frequently flip the switch on the mood and master a huge range of dynamics, while still bouncing off the walls as they make their way down a jagged tunnel built from bricks of hardcore, punk and math rock. All of this takes place in the first minute of opening track 'Baldwin's Case' and it sets the tone for the entire album.
While GMBC clearly possess the skills to produce an onslaught of technical mathcore, their biggest strength is that they know how to leave each tune some breathing space, no matter how short the song is, and they do it well. Very few post-hardcore bands manage to execute the perfect balance between catchy coarse baselines, busy harsh noise and minimal punchy riffs, but the way these guys manage to create space in the middle of all their chaos is comparable only to Rolo Tomassi, just without the synths.
Sure, there's plenty of great bluesy and punky riffs that kick off a song, like 'Platini Beach', but it soon blows into something more. Huge rolling riffs with a calculated edge, like those in 'Ras Ras Rasputin' are completely mindbending.
As with all of the greatest bands, they key isn't in the overall sound, but in the detail. Tiny little quirks of timing, little tonal changes, sudden dynamic shifts, the frantic vocal harmonies (watch out for the mental screaming harmonies in 'Platini Beach', they only last a few seconds but are off the chart).
'Moto Salad' begins with a queasy discordant riff that Spencer Seim and Zach Hill themselves would be proud of and GMBC ride it hard.
With all the proficiency of technical metal, the fun of punk and the rough-edged raw aesthetic of post hardcore, this group of Frenchies surely deserve to take on the wider world of math punk soon.