Chris Annunziata of the 90.3 WMSC-FM radio station recently conducted an interview with guitarist/vocalist Joseph Duplantier of French progressive metallers GOJIRA. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below.
Asked if there are still plans for GOJIRA to release the long-in-the-works “Sea Shepherd” EP, Joseph said: “The goal of that whole [project] was to put the spotlight on Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Which I think is important, as an artist, to put the spotlights on something more important than just being a band and promoting our band always; there’s other things to promote. And Sea Shepherd Conservation Society are doing an amazing job at protecting the oceans. They’re trying their best to save the few whales left alive. And there’s a few tunas, I think, they’re still alive in the ocean.”
He continued: “So we like to talk about them, and somehow, mission accomplished, because we brought a lot of people to their cause and we brought more attention to them. And they told us that too. [They said] ‘We noticed that we have more metalheads now subscribing and sending money.’ ‘Cause they work only with individual donations; they don’t work with any corporations or anything like that. So we like also the way they do things and their ethics.”
Joseph added: “We recorded four songs. One was released — with Devin Townsend and Fredrik Thordendal from MESHUGGAH. The song is called ‘Of Blood And Salt’, and it was released in 2011. There’s three other songs that were on a hard drive that crashed at the time, and it was a huge pain in the butt to retrack all of this. But it was done, like, three years later. But we were such on a roll with the band and we were doing an album and going on tour that it was difficult to go back to that. But right now, as we speak, I have an engineer in my studio putting all of this back together and we’re trying to make this happen finally. But I don’t wanna make a statement, ‘Oh, this is the release date,’ ’cause I learned my lesson. I’ll talk about it when it’s ready, but I’m still working on it.”
Duplantier was also asked if GOJIRA will commemorate the tenth anniversary of the band’s “The Way Of All Flesh” album next year by performing the LP live in its entirety. He said: “No. We’re not into that whole anniversary thing. Maybe we’ll release something, you know, like a special edition [of the record], but I don’t think we’ll play a gig where we play the whole album or something like that. I like when bands do that, but I don’t feel like we’re capable of doing that. There’s always that one song [on] the record that we’ll never play, ’cause it’s just too challenging. [Laughs]
Pressed about which song on “The Way Of All Flesh” would be difficult for GOJIRA to reproduce live, Joseph said: “‘Esoteric Surgery’. There’s these few seconds that are super challenging. As a guitar player, I can play the whole song easily. As a singer, I can sing the whole song. But doing both together is a bit challenging. I could do it, but I’m just super lazy. Sorry.”
Last year, GOJIRA‘s “Magma” staked its claim amongst the best albums of 2016, earning Metal Hammer‘s coveted “Album Of The Year” title while also landing on Rolling Stone‘s “Top 20 Metal Albums of 2016,” Consequence Of Sound‘s “Top 50 Albums of 2016” / “Top 10 Metal Albums of 2016” lists, and Pop Matters‘s “Best Metal of 2016” recap. Additionally, “Stranded”, the lead single off “Magma”, was named one of Stereogum‘s “100 Favorite Songs Of 2016.” “Magma” also earned GOJIRA their first-ever Grammy nominations for “Best Metal Performance” and “Best Rock Album.” GOJIRA‘s crushing track “Silvera” received a nomination for “Best Metal Performance”, while “Magma” was nominated for “Best Rock Album” at the awards.
“Magma” took the #1 spot on Billboard’s Hard Rock Albums chart upon debut, making GOJIRA the first French band to hold the #1 spot on the chart in its nine-year existence. The release of “Magma” marked the highest chart debuts of GOJIRA‘s career, landing them at #4 on Billboard‘s Top Rock Albums chart, #6 on Billboard‘s Tastemaker Albums chart and Top 25 on the Billboard 200. Furthermore, GOJIRA earned career-high chart positions around the globe, including Top 10s in France, Canada, Switzerland, Austria, Finland and Norway, with Top 15 debuts in Australia and Germany.