Air is no stranger to creating soundtracks for films. We saw this thanks to Sofia Coppola using the band for the entire soundtrack of The Virgin Suicides, as well as them contributing to Lost in Translation, and Marie Antoinette, all of which helped shaped those film to become as impactful as they were. However to create a soundtrack for a film that is 110 years old is quite a task. A task Air took on with the release of their seventh album Le Voyage Dans La Lune.
Le Voyage Dans La Lune is the soundtrack to the 1902 film, A Trip to the Moon by Meorge Méliès. The soundtrack was commissioned with the restoration of the film, which is currently on tour at various film festivals. The film itself reminds us today the brilliance behind the use of special effects, even within a silent film. It was one of the first science fiction films created, and at 14 minutes, is jam packed with an inventive narrative story that’s ahead of its time. The soundtrack only proves this more, with the application of Air’s electronic beats that make them so well known and loved.
Le Voyage Dans La Lune is a work of art itself, not too over the top to out shine its film companion, but instead something that can easily walk hand in hand. Like the film, the album is short, running at about a half hour, but within that half hour you are taken on a journey into space that make ideas developed by Jules Verne, and H.G. Wells come to life. It reminds us why in the 1960s Americans and Russians were competing to be the first man to land on the moon. Le Voyage Dans La Lune is inspiring and timeless.
Per norm, Le Voyage Dans La Lune is very much instrumental. Two songs (“Seven Stars” and “Who am I Now?”) did feature vocals from Beach House’s Victoria Legrand as well as Au Revoir Simone, who used their voice as an instrument to compliment the sound and add depth to both songs as well as the album as a whole. However the song that really stood out and spoke that “Air sound” to me was “Sonic Armada,” which was heavy in a synthesizing, futuristic sound, but also very playful and inspiring. Hearing this song while watching the film completely blew my mind, giving me ideas about the future and what it holds for me.
To me, this album is one of the must have albums for this year. It is inspiring, inventive, an completely ahead of it’s time. To see a soundtrack paired with a film created 110 years beforehand is unheard of and Air completely nailed it while sticking to their musical style. The more I listen to Le Voyage Dans La Lune, the more I am finding myself loving it and becoming creatively inspired by it. I would not be surprised if this album made the year-end list this year.