Jesu Why Are We Not Perfect?

Justin K. Broadrick follows up a busy 2007 (two albums, two EPs and a split) with Jesu’s first EP of the year, following two recent splits with Envy and Battle of Mice. Why Are We Not Perfect? marks a significant shift in the evolution of Jesu. While each release moves further away from the crushing guitars that drove the project upon its birth, more so than ever before, Jesu is now about building layers of shimmering texture and melody. "Farewell” demonstrates this at the outset, with harmonies awash in streaming soundscapes, Broadrick’s anodyne vocals and clicking live drums. Instrumental "Blind and Faithless” assumes an electronic personality; with its programmed drum loops and guitar effects resembling synths, it’s almost unrecognizable. But good news for long-time fans unable to cut the cord to Broadrick’s past is the fact that the title track, despite its passive bearing, revives the seething bass fuzz and throbbing rhythm, eventually recruiting the guitar to up the volume to an eight and the grind to a four. Rounding out the EP are alternative versions of "Farewell” and the title track — both appear more like remixes than anything, giving the beats more prominence and lightening up whatever heaviness their is. I get the sense that they represent the brave new world Broadrick is headed towards, but whatever the road he takes, his many disciples will always follow. (Hydra Head)