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Whatever happened to Air (an appreciation)


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The last proper Air album was 2012, Le Voyage dans la Lune, 9 years ago. 
 

I’ve been listening to them a lot recently and have come to the conclusion, or basically cemented my opinion, that Talkie Walkie is the greatest album of the Noughties, it’s a modernist masterpiece. 
 

I really enjoyed Nicolas Godin’s album Concrete and Glass that came out in 2020, it’s very easy listening and a great album to stick on whenever you feel like it, but I miss Air, I miss that otherworldly weirdness that is 10,000 Hz Legend. 
 

What are your favourite air albums or songs?

 

 

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Moon Safari is incredible, La femme d'argent just oozes out of your speakers

 

I've always had a hankering for Playground Love though, its so melancholy and cool

 

 

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I love Moon Safari, particularly Sexy Boy and La Femme D’argent. I also like the single version of Kelly Watch the Stars.

 

I was put off Air when I bought 10,000 Hertz Legend, because it’s incredibly dull. Having said that, I love the collaboration between Dunckel and Lou Hayter - Tomorrow’s World which came out a few years ago.

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, skondo said:

I love Moon Safari, particularly Sexy Boy and La Femme D’argent. I also like the single version of Kelly Watch the Stars.

 

I was put off Air when I bought 10,000 Hertz Legend, because it’s incredibly dull. Having said that, I love the collaboration between Dunckel and Lou Hayter - Tomorrow’s World which came out a few years ago.

 

 

 

 

I recommend you try 10,000 Hertz Legend again. I also didn't like it the first time (and several other times after that) but I can appreciate that it is a great album now. It's just not Moon Safari. 

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Talkie Walkie is indeed a classic album. Not a bad track on there, but my faves are Cherry Blossom Girl and Alone in Kyoto. The Virgin Suicides soundtrack is also great and their first EP "Premiers Symptoms" is good if you want something similar sounding to Moon Safari. There are some good songs on Pocket Symphony and Love 2, but as albums they don't compare to their earlier work. I didn't really enjoy Le Voyage Dans La Lune. They have done another album since, but it's a very limited edition vinyl only job, so I've not heard it.

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I always think they peaked with Premiers Symptoms…not that their other stuff wasn’t good, it just wasn’t as good.

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I loved that ep, I listened to it so much that when Moon Safari came out I couldn’t quite get into it at first because I was so familiar with those songs, and when they took the last bit of Les Professionnels and made it into a whole song, with vocals, that threw me. I got into eventually though. 
 

I loved 10,000 Hz Legend too, but I think by Talkie Walkie they’d rally honed their craft to perfection, I can’t fault that record. 

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Love this thread, so many musical memories flooding back. 10,000hz Legend was a tricky one at first but really grew on me. I definitely need an Air day at work tomorrow to remind me of their work. 

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I'm having an Air day now, well, listening to Moon Safari for the first time in about 15 years, probably more. Back in the late 90s I was a bit worried when mags described Air as 70's-influenced easy listening, but with Moon Safari at least it's on the right side of that, never cheesy or knowingly post-modern, just decent music well made, still sounds great too, aged well. There's a consistency to the whole thing. 

 

Listening to 10,000 Hz Legend now, the composition is similar but the production is a lot less tied to that retro feel, more electronic in places. How Does It Make You Feel is my favourite track on this as I remember it, it's spacious, the beat allows the amazing choral part to come in. It's only really let down by the shitty Mac speech synth which dates it horribly.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I was looking for opinion pieces on 10,000 Hz Legend whilst listening to it the other day and found a brand new article celebrating its 20th anniversary!

 

https://www.stereogum.com/2149345/10-000-hz-legend-turns-20/reviews/the-anniversary/

 

I actually enjoyed listening to it more than Moon Safari this week, which whilst still great, felt a bit heavy on the retro kitsch as well as being overly familiar now. 10,000 Hz Legend is far less familiar and therefore more interesting to digest. There's not really a bad song on it, but at the same time there's nothing that stands out as being amazing. Current favourites are the mid album run of The Vagabond, Radian (classic Air material), Happy and Unlucky, Sex Born Poison.   

 

I had also forgotten how good those five original tracks on Premiers Symptomes are. The two bonus tracks added to the post Moon Safari re-release are a bit sub par and of a different mood, but Modular Mix and Casanova 70 are the epitome of that lush late 90s downtempo style. Plus I love the way that Les Professionnels turned into the beautiful All I Need, but the melodies also featured on another fine track called Soldissimo from Etienne De Crecy's Super Discount LP.

 

 

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I love Air. When I heard them for the first time, I thought I loved electronic music, but I was wrong, it was just Air. I can always listen to Moon Safari. I bought a picture disk of Surfing on a Rocket a while back too because I thought it was the best looking picture disk I’ve ever seen. 

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I thought this thread had been created because of Nicolas Godin’s new track, which premiered yesterday, but it wasn’t. 
 

Anyway, Nicolas Godin has a new track, which premiered yesterday. It’s a collaboration with We Are King, who’s self-titled album from a few years ago remains a firm favourite. 
 

 

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