Air Le Voyage Dans La LuneBest known for their 1998 hit single ‘Sexy Boy’, French electro duo Air have delved into the artsy word of silent cinema for their latest album. The lunar obsession from their debut album ‘Moon Safari’ is still in evidence on ‘Le Voyage Dans La Lune’, which has a distinctly space-age feel to it, from the countdown to ignition sequence on ‘Seven Stars’ to the syncopated synth of ‘Sonic Armada’.

This is fairly inaccessible stuff it has to be said, and the whole experience is truly baffling in places on the first listen. As a largely instrumental record, it’s quite hard to get a foothold, as only two of the 11 tracks feature vocals, and many of those are in French.

Throughout this record, Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoît Dunckel continue to push the envelope in terms of genre, rhythm and style, often at the expense of clarity. As soon as you think you’ve got your head around the synthesised riff or melodic hook, it will mutate into something completely different in an eerie, shape-shifting fashion.

To read the rest of this review on Virgin Red Room, click here.

[Originally posted on 7 October, 2008]

I saw Simon Pegg’s latest film on Friday night and although I wasn’t blown away, I’d recommend it for a fun hour and a half. For those not familiar with the book, How To Lose Friends & Alienate People is the personal account of Toby Young, a celebrity journalist who struggled for five years trying to make a name for himself while working for Vanity Fair, shooting himself in the foot at every social opportunity.

Clayton Harding (Bridges) grills Sidney Young (Pegg)

Clayton Harding (Bridges) grills Sidney Young (Pegg)

In the film version, Simon Pegg is very funny as Young, and much of the humour is startlingly relevant for a  journalist-in-the-making such as me. Megan Fox and Kirsten Dunst play the chalk and cheese love interests, and Jeff Bridges is fantastic as the top dog editor, Clayton Harding.

Don’t expect anything groundbreaking though, this is essentially a romantic comedy with a very contrite ending, but it’s still well-worth seeing and there are several great slapstick moments which are sure to raise a smile. How To Lose Friends… has been labelled ‘The Devil Wears Prada, with balls’ and that’s a fair description – you get the same heady mix of glamour and ruthlessness.

How To Lose Friends & Alienate People is now showing and cost me the princely sum of £6.65 at Islington Vue Cinema.

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