Label: Atavistic
Release: November 4  2005
By: Dajana
Rating: 10/10
Time: 48:02 / 52:09
Style: Jarboe
URL: Jarboe

6 long years it took until the Grande Dame of extreme music could finally finish and release her long-anticipated masterpiece. The Men is an intriguing collection of JARBOE songs with the collaborations of known artists such as Blixa Bargeld, Chris Connelly, Paz Lenchantin and Nic Le Ban, also William Faith and Monica Richards (Faith And The Muse) as well as Steve von Till (Neurosis) and some other ones I didn’t know before. However, waiting and effort were definitely worthwhile! The Men is a breathtaking record, its stylistics, instrumentations, arrangements, atmosphere and expressiveness is alterable like a chameleon, as JARBOE herself is too. This album always again reveals new sites and aspects of this outstanding artist and her musical creativity and expressiveness, but also reflects personality and characteristics of participating musicians, letting the listener know who has contributed which part. The parties are perfectly and harmoniously attuned, proving a deep appreciation to each other. The Men is more than just the sum of its components. The Men lives, breathes and develops with every new minute it is running. It schmooze the listener, it’s disturbing, devouring. It sets free your senses, abducts and captivates them… always again, and always different. The Men never sounds the same because you never feel the same. Every songs has its own impact and in its entirety. To point out single tracks is a difficult task since every song nestles to your sentiment in its special way. This Is Life (and its adoptions) is such song, Feral (with Steve von Till) that already caused gooseflesh at its live performance last year in London, UK., but also To Forget and A Woman’s Dream (with Monica Richards) that displays oriental traits or the extreme Feral Blixa that only consists of abysmal screams.

To really take The Men in and JARBOE’s music generally, you have to get into it deeply, opening your mind and heart, what doesn’t mean that the music is cumbersome or inaccessible. Small minds and purists will fail for sure. The Men is a mesmerizing, tantalizing, under your skin getting and very intensive masterpiece!