Saturday 15 November 2008

Week in Music: Electronic

Two weeks ago I decided to shuffle the genre "Electronic" on my iMandy. As always happens when I attempt this, I soon landed up listening to only Jean-Michel Jarre. I have been listening to Jean-Michel Jarre for 30 years now and there is the old family legend about the time we were travelling from Liverpool to London (I presume) in 1978 and the 'thunderclap' in Equinoxe woke my months-old baby brother up and gave him one heck of a fright.

Jean-Michel Jarre was years ahead of his time and his music is certainly infectious. Out of the 117 times I played his songs in the past couple of weeks, these were the songs I played the most:

1. Oxygene II: I find the energy of this song to be amazing. It reminds me of all things exciting and alive and good in the world and It is no surprise that I can listen to it over and over again.
2. Equinoxe IV: Johannesburg is amazing when it rains with primordial thunderstorms and lightening that seems to split the Earth apart. The Equinoxe album takes you through the anatomy of a thunderstorm from the calm through the chaos to the quiet afterwards. Equinoxe IV is about the thuder and lightening and it is this song that woke my brother up 30 years ago.
3. Ethnicolor I: Zoolook became a firm favourite of mine while I was studying for my Matric in 1990. I loved this first song on the album because of how he combined the strange animal songs to produce an emotional and engaging piece of music. It is a really long song (over 11 minutes) and I'd recommend that you listen to it all the way through.
4. Rendez-Vous II: This has to be my very favourite Jean-Michel Jarre song. It reminds me of rain in manicured gardens, unrequited love and heartbreaking farewells. I was a very romantic 19-year-old with my heads in the clouds when the film Indochine came out and this track reminds me of that time. It's another long track and you have to listen through the 'choir' - it's amazing.
5. Beautiful Agony: This amazing song is from Jean-Michel Jarre's latest album, released in 2007. Now my music tastes are completely schizophrenic and I can listen to indie, dance, classical and metal all in the course of a morning. This song rocks because the master of electronic music could still show the likes of Tiƫsto or Paul Oakenfold today just how to make a dance track.

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