M83 M83

The team of Anthony Gonzalez and Nicolas Fromageau lit up blogs and broke through in 2003 as M83 with their beautiful sophomore album Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts. When Fromageau left last year to pursue other interests, Gonzalez continued on as M83 and recorded the third album, Before the Dawn Heals Us (released back in January), on his own. Taking a step backwards, Gonzalez is now releasing M83’s highly sought after debut album originally released back in 2001 on French label Gooom (also featuring Fromageau). The haunting cinematic traits of the music we’ve come to know and love are all around, but there is a structural element missing to the songs that was obviously developed the next time around. The songs here tend to settle into electronic mood music without any lyrics or the vivid dream sequence drama created by the swelling synth-driven ambient pop of albums two and three. As a debut, this is a notable record that, despite being the weakest in their discography, does a good job of revealing how they laid down the framework for the greatness that followed. (Mute)