Published Sep 30, 2016After releasing his guest-heavy Electronica Vol 2: The Heart of Noise earlier this year, Jean-Michel Jarre will end 2016 by closing the book on his beloved Oxygene record trilogy with one final instalment. The fittingly titled Oxygene 3 will arrive in December.
The third album comes 40 years after the release of the original Oxygene in 1976, which has since become one of the most influential ambient electronic albums in history. The second record in the trilogy, Oxygene 7–13, saw release 20 years on from its predecessor in 1997.
"I don't necessarily like anniversaries that much…But when I was recording Electronica, two years ago, I did a piece of music (today Oxygene 19) that made me think about what Oxygene could be if I was composing it today," Jarre explained in a note on his website. "Then I took the 40th anniversary of the first album as a deadline to push myself to see if I could compose this new chapter in six weeks, just like I did for the first one: probably to avoid thinking too much about, whether it was a good idea or not, and also to record everything in one go… The idea was not to copy the first album, but rather keeping the dogma of embarking listeners on a journey from beginning to end with different chapters, all linked to each other."
What's more, Jarre reached out to French visual artist Michael Granger for permission to reinterpret the iconic skull imagery that adorned the first record.
"Forty years ago too, I discovered Michel Granger's visual universe and immediately felt a total adequacy with the music I was composing. Since then, the cover artwork became famous, like an ecological warning signal, dark and surreal, evoking both outer space and that of our vital living space: this image, for me, has become inseparable from the music...To this end, I asked Michel Granger's permission to perform a 3D model of his creation in order to change the angle of the visual, which he amicably accepted."
Oxygene 3 will arrive on December 2 on CD and vinyl. All three records will also be on CD and vinyl in the "Ultimate Oxygene Trilogy Box Set, which includes an attached coffee table book featuring rare photos and notes on the story of the series.
1. Part 14
2. Part 15
3. Part 16
4. Part 17
5. Part 18
6. Part 19
7. Part 20