Jesu Lifeline

Jesu Lifeline
While Justin K. Broadrick has established himself as an unpredictable and prolific icon in the realm of aggressive music with his multifarious projects, he’s also known for sticking to a singular vision per moniker. It was only in March that he released the second Jesu full-length, and now comes yet another EP that naturally finds him adding another stunning chapter to the lush sludge of his present incarnation. The first impression is that Lifeline is simply keeping in line with the other Jesu recordings and for the most part, that’s an accurate assumption. The title track sounds like a suitable continuation of Conqueror, moving at a snail-like pace while a synthetic orchestra builds a heavenly beam overtop of the chugging guitars and programmed beats. "You Wear Their Masks” follows with a more sinister ambience thanks to some recurring down-tuned bass that fights the heartening chimes. "Storm Comin’ On” doesn’t fare much differently, however Broadrick invites ex-Swans vocalist Jarboe to contribute her unique vocals, which hauntingly warp the ethereal soundtrack. It’s not only the EP’s standout track but also an interesting experiment that shows Jesu have room for more vocalists than just Broadrick. "End of the Road” closes out the four-song effort with some of the heaviest riffage we’ve heard from Jesu in a while yet at the same time, it’s one of the more melodically charged tunes Broadrick has ever penned. Lifeline finds Jesu moving slowly forward, adding more beautiful doom to their already mammoth-sized discography. (Hydra Head)