on 20 October 2009
The last Air album which really did it for me was the much maligned and underrated "10 000Hz Legend"; since then Air have played it safe and became rather mainstream. "Love 2" is the first offering from their new studio and they have once more come up with something that can sit alongside their best work.
There is something for every Air fan on this, plenty of synth noodling, gorgeous melodies, radio friendly tracks, all done with their inimatable (OK much imitated) Gallic flair. No weak tracks, not sure why someone referred to "Night Hunter" as a weak track - it is classic old skool Air.
Whereas I was absolutely gobsmacked with horror at Zero 7's latest offering, I am delighted that Air have produced such a listenable and enjoyable experience. Moon Safari is what it is and I'm delighted they never went back to recreate it.
on 5 November 2009
I am a long term Air fan and this cd will not disappoint. Their albums always bear many 'airings' haha and this contains more classic tracks. I'm not sure about the added dvd stuff, have found it tricky to access on my computer, it always tries to go to my old dialup settings. Great music tho.
on 12 October 2009
We all know how good Moon Safari was/is. Anyone who doesn't is obviously a bit simple. It is without doubt one of the most complete albums ever made, not a weak track in sight. It's is the ultimate chill out album. The album you'd take on a desrted island with you, the album you'll listen to at 4am after a nightout. It's quite simply superb. Now you see, Air messed themselves up a bit there (that rhyme was by no means intentional) How can you follow and album like that. The answer was, well, really, you can't. You either try ad reproduce it, and then be accused of living on the back of that hit, or you go and try something a bit diffrent, and dare I say brave, and then you get accused of deserting what you're good at.
So that is Air really, that's what they've done, they went a bit electronic, some could say tried to be a bit to clever and they haven't really produced anything outstanding since. Good, oh yeah, of course, I've enjoyed all of the albums post Moon Safari. Loved them the same way. No, of course not.
This is a bit of a mish mash of all there stuff, not a massive mish mash, actually I'm lying, it's not a huge mish mash but the closest to Moon Safari since, well, Moon Safari. It's nice, it's not as good as Moon Safari and they mess it up a bit by adding a couple of heavy songs in there, I'm looking at you "Be A Bee"
There's not potential singles, mean when do Air really produce what you'd class as something that's going to rival Leona Lewis anyway, that's why we love them right?
Highlight though without doubt, Love, Heavens Light and the outstanding, breezy and strangely titled "tropical disease" which has got some lovely pan pipes on it. Yes, lovely pan pipes, something I never thought would be possibly to use in the same sentence.
To conclude and allow you lovely people to get on with your lives, and stop reading this drivel I would just like to say.
If you liked Moon Safari, if you enjoyed Premier Symptoms and if you don't want to listen to anymore of the contestants on X Factor, you couldn't go very far wrong with the beautiful Love 2 !
on 30 May 2010
There are still minute traces of Moon Safari X factor here and there but it's spread very thinly. The majority of these tracks are either instrumental, or lyrically so brief and soft as to be instrumental anyway. This is not an album heavy with lyrics.
1. "Do the Joy" 2:59 (7 out of 10 stars)
Effective near instrumental.
2. "Love" 2:43 (7 stars)
Another decent near instrumental.
3. "So Light Is Her Footfall" 3:13 (7 stars)
It's alright, has some good little musical details in it like the backwards guitar. All a bit lightweight to be a single (they made a music video for it so I assume it was released as a single).
4. "Be a Bee" 3:45 (7 stars)
A more propulsive, rockier track. Has some short buried vocals so for all intents and purposes it's an instrumental.
5. "Missing the Light of the Day" 4:26 (4 stars)
A bunch of musical noises and hard to make out computer treated vocals. A bit of a tasteful mess musically.
6. "Tropical Disease" 6:47 (7 stars)
Up-tempo instrumental (there's some very brief vocals five minutes in). A bit basic and simple, lacking any left turns that you would expect from Air. A curiously straightforward track. It could almost be soundtrack music for an 80's detective programme (I'm picturing Bergerac even though I've never seen an episode).
7. "Heaven's Light" 3:51 (5 stars)
Indifferent vocal track. Completely forgettable.
8. "Night Hunter" 4:13 (5 stars)
A lot of interesting sounds on this instrumental but it doesn't really add up to a song. Pointless.
9. "Sing Sang Sung" 3:08 (5 stars)
Soft vocal song. Pretty but bland. Unimpressive, especially for a lead single.
10. "Eat My Beat" 2:44 (5 stars)
A ballsier, rockier instrumental. Mildly invigorating but doesn't go anywhere or do anything.
11. "You Can Tell It to Everybody" 4:09 (3 stars)
Soft mid-tempo vocal song that reminds me melodically of "Weather With You" by Crowded House. Boring and featureless.
12. "African Velvet" 3:47 (2 stars)
Amazingly bland instrumental. How they recorded this, played it back and then thought it was worth including I can't imagine.
I like to make EP playlists out of some albums on my iPod. Tracks 1, 3, 4 and 6 made the cut.
on 19 March 2010
I must admit on first listening to this album I thought that Air had run out of steam.
However, after listening to the album through earphones, I started to hear the magic that makes this album so great. The subtle electronic sounds that take you first by surprise and then draw you back to hear them again, especially in the second half of the album, are just sublime. This album is a real grower so stick with it, put you earphones on and lose yourself in Air's Love 2 Subtle Magic.
on 4 June 2013
I really liked this album, but couldn't give it 5 stars as it didn't blow me away. Really nice music to have on in the background, which isn't meant to be insulting!
on 20 October 2009
If you forget for a moment that these are the same guys who gave the world 'Moon Safari' almost 12 years ago you will have little to hold against this new album.
Comparisons are difficult, and perhaps unfair, because Air have moved on a lot since then. Their sound is more mature, more 'retro', even more electronic and, at least most of the time, a bit more formal. 'Moon Safari' will probably never be equalled but that isn't necessarily bad - and you can't hope for a repeat every time Air edits a new album.
So what can you expect from Love 2? I tell you what: lounge, 60s and 70s, contrast, variety, minimal beats. I would say that Air is still trying new sounds, finding some new ones and still exploring older ones.
The synth on track one reminds me of a time when Pink Floyd were doing experimental music, but then with a slow beat that could only be recent.
Track two - "Love" - has minimal beats and lyrics - if you can call lyrics to the few words that are sung.
Track three - "So Light is Her Footfall" - has that Air 'trademark' that you remind you of 10.000 Hz, Moon Safari and Talkie Walkie.
Track four - "Be a Bee" - has a really strong and fast beat (75 bpm if you count only the main beat, 4 times that if you count the 'minor' beats) and a guitar that is reminiscent of 1960s and 1970s European movies. Probably the strongest track.
Track five - "Missing the Light of Day" - actually reminds me of early Royksopp, and of me 1980s pop, like Depeche Mode and early The Cure.
Track six - "Tropical Disease" - is a small pearl. It sounds silly, with a whimsical flute (some would say silly, I disagree) playing over and over with a synth background. And yet, like "Be a Bee", it could be part of a soundtrack of a 60s or 70s European movie.
"Heaven's Light" is the song that probably has more lyrics. Obviously nothing too much, but a great melody, very light and loungy, very 70s, but not poppy at all.
"Night Hunter" also reminisces about "Moon Safari", but only in very small parts. The rest is a lot like "Pocket Symphony", their previous album. The oriental influence, even though a bit faded, can definitely be felt.
Track 9 - "Sing Sang Sung" - is funny, light hearted, very, very poppy. A true pleasure, though also very commercial. I haven't gotten tired of it yet though, so I'm hoping it won't grate against my ears too soon...
Track 10 - "Eat my Beat" - again goes back to a guitar sound that goes back many years, with a complex beat. In fact I can hear at least three different guitars, whose sounds are all probably made by synths (but who cares, it just sounds great!)
Track 11 - "You Can Tell it to Eevrybody" - mixes oriental, lounge and soft beat lounge music. There are parts that I don't like particularly, others are okay. Probably the weakest track in the album...
Finally, "African Velvet", is again a bit weak. There's a saxophone that makes it sound a bit jazzy but the overall effect is only of a very poor, badly-put together song. It reminds me of saxophone on the Blade Runner soundtrack except that on that soundtrack it sounded great.
So there you are. Were it not for those two last weak tracks and this album would get a five star rating from me. It is outstanding and just what you would expect from Air in terms of quality, though the sound itself is always evolving and being developed. Definitely a good addition to my music collection!
on 10 July 2010
I would forget Moon Safari. Love 2 is a completely different album. Opening up with the epic, otherworldly sound of 'Do The Joy', it hangs together really well as a whole album, taking you on a journey from song to song, up and down and up again and then in a completely different direction altogether! It is SO beautiful. JB's light and dreamy voice is sublime and he's a true maestro on the piano/keyboards, complemented by Nicolas's superb guitar which gives a harder edge to some songs, such as 'Be A Bee', 'Eat To My Beat' and 'African Velvet'. 'Heaven's Light' is particularly lovely, as is 'Missing The Light Of Day' and you feel as if you are floating through the galaxy, passing planets and shooting stars on a cosmic journey! You won't want to come back down to Earth! 'Tropical Disease' is rich and sensual. Air's music often moves me to tears, but in a good way - I just can't believe how beautiful their music sounds sometimes! This album is just right - no need to skip tracks, no long dull passages or jarring sounds. Some music that uses 'electronic' sounds can feel cold and harsh but none of that here - beautiful intricate textures, beautiful melodies and FULL of emotion and positivity. HEAVEN - I LOVE IT!!
on 9 October 2009
I have listened to this now about 6 times and I absolutely love it. Yes there are some ok tracks on the album 'Night Hunter' for example. However, there are some fantastic ones as well. I have heard people say that 'Do the Joy' sounds like it should have been at the end of the album as it sounds like a finale, I think it is more like them returning from their 'Moon Safari' days.
Tropical Disease is a good example of a track that would not look out of place as a theme tune to some 70's spy film. However the highlight for me is the welcome appearance of 'Be a Bee' on a studio album. I first heard this on the Live at the BBC album from 98 and loved it then.
I disagree with the previous review where they state that the band have lost the "dense layered texture" from 'Moon Safari'. This is probably down to the band being in their own, purpose built' studio and as a result the sound is more polished.
In a nutshell this is Air at their best. Do not hesitate in buying it. There are many tunes on the album that will be stuck in your head for ages. I cannot recommend this album enough.
on 22 October 2015
Bought to replace older formats of the same album in my collection - it was always going to get 5 stars!!