M83’s Adam Gonzalez has pivoted from his usual defined synth pop to release a collection of ambient tracks called DSVII. The offering serves as a follow up to 2007’s Digital Shades Vol. 1. Stream the album below via Apple Music and Spotify.
While Vol. 1 was a tapestry of old unused material, Gonzalez approached DSVII as a more focused effort from the start. Feeling turned off by fan’s reactions to 2016’s Junk, Gonzalez made a conscious decision to take a break from his pop world and focus on “something stronger that featured the depth of a proper studio album,” he stated in a press release.
As a result, the M83 producer took off to Cap d’Antibes in France for five months. During that time Gonzalez found his muse was not only his beautiful surroundings, but time spent listening to Brian Eno’s ambient phase and playing old video games. As he explained,
“I mainly spent my time swimming in the Mediterranean Sea, reading, watching films and playing ‘80s video games The inspiration behind this record is mainly video game music. It felt so refreshing to play all of these old school games again. There is something so naive and touching about them. It’s simple and imperfect. And this is exactly what I tried to achieve with DSVII.”
Recently released singles “Temple of Sorrow” and “Lune de Fiel” both hone in on that early Nintendo vibe, with long drawn ambient movements haloed by angelic dreamy tones that feel plucked straight from The Dark Crystal. The tracks feel like a movie score, and in fact are the inspiration for the three-part short film called Extazus from French experimental director Bertrand Mandico.
A special edition pink galaxy colored double vinyl version of DSVII is available via Mute. Listen to the whole thing below.
01. Hell Riders
02. A Bit of Sweetness
03. Goodbye Captain Lee
05. Meet The Friends
07. A Word of Wisdom
08. Lune De Fiel
09. Jeux D’Enfants
10. A Taste of the Dusk
11. Lunar Son
12. Oh Yes You’re There, Everyday
14. Taifun Glory
15. Temple of Sorrow