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Air is the latest in a long line of acclaimed artists to share their personal music collection with the world in the form of Azuli’s album series ‘Late Night Tales’
Individually known as Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoît Dunckel and collectively known as Air. Nicolas and Jean-Benoît have under their belt debut album Moon Safari, as well 10,000 Hz Legend and last year’s Talkie Walkie.
Given 75 minutes of Late Night Tales at their disposal, it’s axiomatic that The Song is paramount, thus fellow countryman Sebastien Tellier makes a deserved appearance with his obscure ‘Le Long de la Rivière Tendre’ With The Song as our theme, we naturally have some of the greats present and correct. ‘Let my blood pressure on its way, cos my autumn’s done come,’ may well be grammatically awry, but there are few songs that express better the end of one’s life than Lee Hazelwood’s contribution which amazingly stays the right side of morbid. We plunder Scott Walker’s finest ’60s LP Scott 4 for his offering: ‘The Old Man’s Back Again’. If ever a fellow was born the wrong nationality it was Walker and here it has the lyrical flavour of the French chanson with a touch of Morricone in the cold and foreboding strings.
Leftfield offerings come with The Trogg’s ‘Cousin Jane’, the whispered vocals, simple cellos and finger piano suggesting a British Velvet Underground, before Reg and the boys collapse into the comely glissandos of Air’s collaboration with writer Alessandro Baricco and thence to the milky folds of Ravel’s ‘Pavane Pour Une Infante Defunte’. Coming out of leftfield is Cat Power’s wonky ballad ‘Metal Heart’, while Robert Wyatt’s ‘PLA’ is an off-the-wall lullaby to his partner Alfie. And there are the soundtracks – Tan Dun & George Delerue– fitting since Air have been writing them in their minds for their whole lives.
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