Moon Safari

Select Magazine Review

Lee 'Scratch' Perry once claimed dub raggae was where you hid from "the bastards." You could say much the same of the music made by Parisian duo Air. It's subtly kitsch, admirably technofied Burt Bacharach/John Barry easy listening with melancholy at its heart. Means of escape from grim reality doesn't get much more persuasive.

'Moon Safari' was recorded in a stone barn with a four-track, some ancient synthesizers and proper instruments, and such is the balance of thought and feeling that even the terminally goofy vocoder becomes a thing of beauty, as evidenced by 'New Star In The Sky' and 'Remember.' In addition, sounds that an Anglo-centric ear will find strange indeed give it an air of alluring freshness. Debussy, Serge Gainsbourg and the kind of lardy Euro disco Giorgio Moroder used to make are usually the preserve of the knowing obscurantist, but here the organic whole sounds completely free of any clever-clever contrivance.

They may have been made by an ex-architect and an ex-mathematician, but the likes of new single 'Sexy Boy' and 'Le Voyage De Penelope' use dance music as a launchpad to places that UK/US producers can only daydream about. Frankly, your life will be the poorer for not owning 'Moon Safari' - and don't forget to put £10 on it going top five in the LP's of '98. (4/5)