There’s not many albums that you can mark as perfection. Like a fine wine, it has to hit all the right sweet spots. All those sweet spots being a perfect soundtrack embellished in a recording that you cannot stop putting down.
I don’t think any album is more perfect to receive a 5-star engraving than astute French electronic collective, M83 for their masterful work and sixth studio representation, Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming.
Released in 2011, it not only marked the beginning of the end for some – with it being the last M83 album keyboardist Morgan Kibby participated in – but also set the ball rolling as synth-pop/shoe-gaze music became a worldwide sensation overnight, as M83 became one of the most influential acts of the 2010s.
Sincerity, solitude and nostalgia’s emotional impact. For me, no album – certainly within the realms of tightly-confined lush electronic music – has ever achieved close to what M83’s Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming has had on me as an alluring musician and avid listener of all things beautiful.
A perfect soundtrack setting with seemless transitions interwoven within memories and melancholy, the bands first double album – boasting a 22-track walkthrough – is an outstanding and outshining masterpiece. A far more dark and epic project by proportions to his love-letter convos from Saturdays=Youth prior in 2008, it marked Anthony Gonzales (M83) as one of those guys.
I mean, just look at what’s on offer. You’ve got the lead nostalgia-wagon of Midnight City, a neon-retro cityscape of being lost but finding your way. Then, that goes straight into of Reunion, a cathartic sprit-dweller of finding lost love <<My body is like a lightning rod/Capsize me and douse me in your bay/A shiver of want, always/When you are on the tip of my tongue>> .. you seeing the pattern here? After that, you’ve got a mesmerising interlude – this album is littered with these one-minutes food-for-thought moments – into Wait. A telling tribute to the thesis of the song; melancholic memory attached to childhood, <<Send your dreams/Where nobody hides/Give your tears/To the tide>>. Gonzales himself stated in an interview during the heights of the album release: “These weird memories about being a child made me melancholic, crying alone in my apartment, thinking about something I’ll never be able to redo. This album is a tribute to those years of innocence where everything was perfect.” Centred around the whole pivotal point of the album, I’m sure it is a truly relatable moment for everyone – as everyone has been through exactly what he is on about through one way or another.
While this is a sorrowful moment, Gonzales also likes to point out that it’s also highly fruitful to look back on those childhood memories with nothing but happiness, because after all, you were just a kid, right? Raconte-moi une historie is a bittersweet telling of this. Loosely translated from French, it spells out as tell me a story. I’ll be here forever for all 22 so I’m going to shoot off some of my favourites. Which – post edit – turns out that it’s all of ’em. Claudia Lewis and This Bright Flash follow. Then, almost as if the album is talking to its own narrative we have two singles that are inseparable to one another; When Will You Come Home? and Soon, My Friend. Equipped with an anthemic belter after, My Tears Are Becoming The Sea is both my childhood soundtrack as I explore space with my frightfully strong imagination. Is it any wonder he was cast for writing the music for the film, Oblivion after this one? Then they just keep coming. Bloody hell.
Distorting a new beautiful world, New Map is a cinematic dream while Ok Pal and Another Wave from You is a somewhere else feeling – anywhere but here maybe? Even filler songs aren’t really fillers, they all provide a purpose, an unequivocal party piece to the full picture. The Outro is one of the best close to any album I’ve heard in awhile. I just wish I got the chance to relieve listening to this album for the first time all over again.
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