Hydrolux - A review on Electronic Music á la Jean-Michel Jarre
The album comes with the typical sound one would expect from the French Electronic Music composer, the icon, Jean-Michel Jarre. Especially, if you are a privileged connoisseur of this type of music, having been part of the audience of this genre when it first appeared. In the past, Electronic Music was dominated by highly experimental sounds, not always suitable for air play on the radio. It was a music for technicians, theorists, maybe even philosophers too. But not for the normal consumer, who prefers it more harmonic, structured, let's say, the easy listening way. Nevertheless, Jarre's music was experimental and still is. But he knew and knows, how to connect the "odd" elements with the ones that the majority of listeners prefer. And this made him a wizard of a very special type of sound. If you hear it, you will say, yes, that is Jean-Michel Jarre
Now, more than 30 years after Oxygene, an album appeared, called (a secret tip for lovers of this sound); Hydrolux. It is not 100% THE Jarre-style, but this was perhaps intended. A tribute, yes. A kind of a sequel? Maybe. But a carbon copy? No. There are a lot of compositional things; Jarre wouldn't have done it this way. So the album is presenting its own way of mixing synth sounds with a story. But obviously it includes a vast amount of the typical sound effects, found on Oxygene, Equinoxe and their successors. So, already after a few seconds you'll find yourself in a world of floating sound-carpets, old-school rhythm-machine landscapes and moody harmonies. There are tracks that subtly tell a story and then it can feel like being under water. A few minutes on and a straight forward beat makes you want to dance. And the best thing, during 45 minutes of wandering through this electronic world, you completely forget, it is NOT Jarre. The album does not even come from France nor from the Seventies. These sounds' sources are not even analog. All of it comes straight from a digital processor - did you know this? Felsenstein made the proof; not everything, that seems to be vintage, really is vintage. No need to stack a ton of expensive synths into a studio. If you know enough about the characteristics of the retrospective sounds, you can create them with a CPU too. Example: Electronic Music
Of course, Jean-Michel Jarre is not only the music. Behind the "legend" also stands a long road of Guinness-Record awarded concerts. Jarre has had over three decades of playing live in front of millions of fans, with huge light and lasershows, Megawatt-soundsystems and thousands of impressive other things. But, if you just concentrate on the music itself, forgetting the "hype" around Jarre, it is perfect for y enjoying a very intimate Electronic Music concert by yourself. For example, even from your headphones, Hydrolux will definitely enlighten you and evoke a similar magic not dissimilar to that of Oxygene or Equinoxe, back in the mid 70s.