Is GOJIRA's Les Enfants Sauvages DVD Worth Picking Up?
If you've been fortunate enough to see Gojira live, then you may already understand the intensity of watching one of the greatest live performances in metal history unfold in front of your face. Whether they're playing a tiny venue or massive theater, the one unifying understatement is that the band is just about as flawless as you can get, in any live atmosphere, every single time.
So when sitting down to watch Gojira's Les Enfants Sauvages (Live At Brixton Academy) DVD, the real questions on my mind were not about the band which I already know to be amazing live, but rather How does the intensity of their live show translate to the comfort of viewing it from home? Does their flawless live sound become over produced for DVD? and Is this DVD really worth buying since I plan to see them again soon?
Truth be told, I've seen many amazing live acts fall victim to a really bad DVD due to a number of issues like badly timed editing, stale or overly jerky camera shots, and bad overall presence of the band. This is something I'm particularly picky about when watching a filmed performance. So when the DVD starts out with "Explosia," I'm a little weary as I'm literally watching the camera crew try to find their groove. With so many view obstructions, out of focus shots, and pointless pans on the first song, I was a bit worried the rest of the DVD would be more of the same.
Fortunately, everything gets better on the very next song, "Flying Whales", and continues to become more engaging through the duration of the DVD. There are also about 14 camera angles capturing the performance, so you get a real sense of the show no matter where you'd theoretically stand. Overall I think the video production came out really good, and although I'd still encourage folks to see this band live, the DVD does paint a great picture of how Gojira brings it. I even found myself head banging vigorously as if I were at the show, that's always a good sign.
I've always been super impressed how Johann Meyer, Gojira's sound man, is capable of fine tuning the band in a way they sound so incredibly massive but simultaneously crystal clear, no matter what venue they play. The great news is unlike some DVD's where the audio post-mix is handled by a third party, Johann Meyer sees the project to the end. This of course ensures the same amazing quality you hear live, is what you get on the DVD.
In a word: Definitely!
I've seen this band more times than I can count in the past decade, and plan to do so many more, but Les Enfants Sauvages is a great way to get your fix between shows. It also makes a great collector's item with accompanying live CD, and booklet filled with quality photos of the band around the world.
You can order the DVD at the band's official web store.