Gorod is a French technical/melodic death metal band. Characterized by their focus on catchy songwriting, playful structures, and melodic ideas that avoid the typical In Flames/At the Gates trappings, they have worked their way up over the years and become a well-loved act.
Formed as Gorgasm in Bordeaux, France in 1997, the initial lineup was comprised of Guillaume Martinot (vocals), Mathieu Pascal (guitars), Benoit Claus (bass), and Sandrine Bourguignon (drums). The first few years were uneventful and mostly consisted of shows, though a self-titled demo was released in 2000. A guitarist by the name of Nico (full name unknown) joined sometime after that and participated on a 2002 promo, though he quit shortly after and was replaced by Arnaud Pontaco, creating the lineup that would release Neurotripsticks in 2004 to surprising acclaim. The next year brought two things: a split with Nerlich and Decoherence and a name change, as they had become big enough that there actually was a chance that people would confuse them with the American brutal death metal act of the same name. From here on out, they were going as Gorod, and they quickly rereleased Neurotripsticks with two additional tracks under that name on Willowtip Records, which had far greater reach than the small French label that had originally released it. Leading Vision quickly followed in 2006 to even more acclaim, and they were quickly being hailed as the next big thing in tech-death. An appearance at Maryland Deathfest in 2007 only helped further solidify this.
Of course, not everything can always stay the same, and changes sometimes do occur. In this case, it was Bourguignon who left, with Samuel Santiago taking her place. Process of a New Decline followed in 2009, and its release was supported by severals European tours with Immolation and Cattle Decapitation, along with various fest appearances that included a second appearance at MDF in 2010 and a mainstage appearance at Hellfest. 2010 also brought with it more lineup changes as Martinot and Pontaco left, with Julien Deyres and Nicolas Alberny taking the resulting spots. The Transcendence EP followed in 2011 and was supported by a short trek with Benighted and Kronos, followed by a longer one with The Faceless. 2012, however, proved to be their true breakthrough, as it was the year that A Perfect Absolution dropped and made the biggest splash yet. Various tours in support of it followed, including their first full US tour and their first-ever appearance in Japan, and the momentum continued even in spite of Santiago's departure in late 2013, which was thankfully rectified quickly when Karol Diers joined in early 2014. As of 2015, they have a new album on the way; A Maze of Recycled Creeds will be out on October 16, 2015.
Discography (Gorod only):
- Neurotripsticks (2005) - rerelease of Gorgasm debut with two new tracks
- Leading Vision (2006)
- Process of a New Decline (2009)
- Transcendence (2011) - EP
- A Perfect Absolution (2012)
- A Maze of Recycled Creeds (2015)
- Kiss the Freak (2017) - EP
- Aethra (2018)
- The Orb (2023)
This band contains examples of the following tropes:
- Badass Bookworm: Julien Deyres has a Master's in Art History and works as a tour guide for his day job.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: Rampant in their early material due to a fairly poor grasp of English. Martinot got better with each album, though Deyres hasn't really had this problem.
- Concept Album: A Perfect Absolution (about Olga of Kiev and her massacre of the Drevlians), A Maze of Recycled Creeds (about the rise and fall of the Salon de la Rose + Croix), and Aethra (about moon worship in various faiths).
- Cover Version: "Textures"
- Early-Installment Weirdness: Neurotripsticks has noticeable brutal death metal elements that don't show up at all in their later material.
- Epic Rocking: The title track to Transcendence tips the scales at over fifteen minutes. Nothing else they have even comes close to that length.
- Lead Bassist: Benoit Claus is a Type A and arguable Type D, as their prominent Cynic and Atheist influences mean that his basslines are very important to the overall sound.
- Melodic Death Metal: Particularly in their later material.
- New Sound Album: Several:
- Process was significantly more technical than their earlier material and was stylistically quite similar to Necrophagist.
- Absolution dialed down the flashier elements of their sound in favor of more prog elements, along with occasional fusion, funk, and Latin elements.
- Out-of-Genre Experience: Kiss the Freak is a technical death/thrash EP that they quickly wrote and recorded in roughly a month in order to be able to better fit in on a touring bill full of thrash acts that they had just been added to.
- Progressive Metal: A Perfect Absolution, and it stands to reason that they'll continue on this path.
- Special Guest: Christian Muenzner and Michael Keene both contributed guest solos on A Perfect Absolution, while Alberny is apparently contributing a guest solo of his own to the new Vale of Pnath full-length.
- Technical Death Metal: Their first three albums, particularly on Process.
- Thrash Metal: Kiss the Freak.