French Twosome Hold Steady to Their Enigmatic Place Among the Competition

Air
Love 2
7/10

When Air first made their English-language debut with Moon Safari back in 1998, the album’s crisp ambient beats and hits like “Sexy Boy” and “You Make it Easy” cemented the French electronic duo’s reputation as purveyors of seduction. Eleven years later, Air continue to deliver with Love 2, a throwback to their “Virgin Suicides” soundtrack, steeped in tracks that would meld just as well into the background of a tender, indie-romance flick.

This film begins on a stormy night: Our heroine stands under the light of a single streetlamp while six-minute gem “Tropical Disease” sets the scene with shimmering notes of cascading instrumentation. Dashing into the nearest building for refuge, she serendipitously meets her love interest in a dim lounge filled with the dense, rich beats of the appropriately named “Love.”

The plot shifts to the male perspective as they dance to yearning ballad “So Light is her Footfall” (“Such a five-minute stranger/ I wish I could have her/ She is an angel”). The two head back to his place only to find dire developments ruin their plans. The drama is appropriately emphasized by odd number “Eat My Beat,” one of the album’s weaker tracks, whose title alone makes it a Michael Jackson tribute gone wrong.

The heroine temporarily wallows in despair on “Missing the Light of the Day” — a robotic, repetitive jingle that harkens the far-off “Sexy Boy.” Not to be deterred, she quickly rebounds and pursues her man, with the feisty “Be a Bee” as motivation. Their last obstacle overcome, the two reunite among cheerful plucks and melancholy, foreshadowing lines (“Nothing lasts/ It’s better that way”) on “Sing Sang Sung.”

In the years since Air’s debut, a new crop of French electrodes has emerged (see: Justice, Phoenix), but this duo is still creating atmospheric LPs with gorgeous sonic subtlety. Give Love 2 a spin and get lost in reverie. Imagine it into your own film, or better yet, invite someone along and take some advice from the album’s lead single “Do the Joy.” You can thank me later.

Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$0
$2500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$0
$2500
Contributed
Our Goal