M83 (band)

M83 is an electronic music band from France founded in 2001. The band is led by the artists Anthony Gonzalez and Nicolas Fromageau. Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts is M83’s second album and soon after which Nicolas Fromageau left the band.

The tracks feature a combination of synths and drum machines with a shoegaze to create a composition with abundant tone, color, nuance and thrash. In 2006 the tracks “In Church” and “unrecorded” were used in the movies Stranger than fiction and Camping Sauvage respectively.M83 has made the album with the intention of drawing every last drop of emotion out of robotic machines and computers, where the unnatural is made natural and vice versa. Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts begins with a snippet of bird examples and a vocals that is computerised “sun is shining, birds are singing”. It’s quite a way to begin a record album made very nearly entirely of electronically processed sounds — there’s nothing resembling anything as natural as birdsong elsewhere on Dead Cities — however it leads nicely into “Unrecorded”, the initial complete track in the album.

When inside, you’re exposed to a panorama of ostensibly endless depth and complexity. Rather than simply closing, sounds and songs fades away into the horizon, continually delivering a potential of something familiarized but surprising to follow. “Unrecorded”, the first full-fledged track on Dead Cities, makes evident the reason M83 have attracted so many My Bloody Valentine comparisons. Creating a foundation of fuzzed-out guitar, rich bass, synth strings, and a drum machine that sounds astonishingly like the acoustic drums of Loveless, the duo levels burbling techno synthesizers into intricate rhythmic intersections as the song’s vast backdrop slowly dies out. The album rendered a niche of listeners and fans for M83 and also a favourability of critics. This was highly due to the original form of music that it was able to create. Many have actually not realized the immense deepness of this vinyl record unless they have heard it more than twice.

Just as My Bloody Valentine refashioned distorted electric guitars as instruments capable of divine and volatile sound, M83 recast harsh sawtooth waves as voices of reflection and regret. On “Run into Flowers”, almost-real strings and whispered vocals are juxtaposed with overdriven drum machine clicks, as a repetitive 4/4 beat evokes rich, green fields as effortlessly as deserted industries and contaminated rivers. The album along with being called “weird yet innovative” has often lead to mixed reviews from both critics as well as listeners. But they say once you understand the true depth of this album, you can fall unconditionally for it. Also another factor that can add to the whole feel of Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts is the analogue medium of Vinyl records.

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